Thursday, August 12, 2010

Could Wyclef Really Lead Haiti?

Recently, Wyclef Jean announced he has submitted all necessary paperwork and will officially run for president of Haiti. The Hatian-born Jean, took his announcement all the way to "Larry King Live" after he traveled to Haiti to sign the papers.

I understand that Wyclef is passionate about his native country, but this seems like he's letting his emotions get the best of him. Haiti needs leadership, not a spokesperson. While I'm sure his face and voice can captivate the already struggling country, he can not use fame to rebuild the government infrastructure that got destroyed. The tasks at hand in Haiti would make even the most seasoned politician sweat, let alone a man who moved out of the country when he was a child and pursued a career in music.

I don't know what truth there is to him barely being in Haiti since the earthquake, or whether he mishandled money with his non-profit, but I do know that he seemed rattled when he was questioned about both instances. Politics will eat him alive if there is even a hint that he hasn't been as supportive to Haiti as he claims. Wyclef resigned as chairman of Yele Haiti, even though there was never evidence he misused funds. If he gets accused of something as president, he can't just step down and abandon the people who would be counting on him.

There are plenty of things that Haiti needs, but an inexperienced leader is not one of them. I do believe Wyclef's heart is in the right place. But if he wants to help, he should visit whenever he can and help out at the camps for misplaced citizens. He can continue to raise money for the country to help buy food and aid in rebuilding efforts.
Before anybody says I'm not supporting this man, or I'm hating on him, think about something. The U.S. has been in an economic mess for quite some time. We also experienced some very harsh natural disasters in recent years that have left entire regions struggling. I guarantee nobody in this country would elect a president with absolutely no political experience to lead us back to prominence. The same should go for Haiti. Haiti's next president will oversee billions of dollars meant to aid the country. If Wyclef flinched when asked about the 400k his charity raised for Haiti, what will he do when some of those billions get lost in translation?

While I applaud Wyclef for wanting to help clear the smoke from the devastation that Haity suffered, I think his help would be better utilized on the ground than in the capitol building.


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