in Haiti, the Court of Auditors is crushing power

On Monday, the Haitian Court of Auditors determined the disastrous management of the various governments that have been successful since 2008 by the PetroCaribe Funds, these hundreds of millions of dollars in aid offered by Caracas. The projects started through this program have ignored the basic principles of managing public funds, the department condemns.

In a new report published on Monday, August 17, Haiti’s Supreme Court of Justice regrets the fraudulent and often illegal administration of various ministries and administrations of hundreds of millions of dollars in aid offered by Venezuela between 2008 and 2016.

Projects initiated without a needs assessment or even a cost estimate, repeated violations of public procurement standards: over 1000 pages, judges spare no institution.

“The investment projects and contracts linked to the PetroCaribe Fund were not managed in accordance with the principles of efficiency and economy”, the Court of Auditors accuses.

Six governments since 2008

Established on the initiative of former President Hugo Chavez, this program has enabled several countries in Latin America and the Caribbean to benefit from loans from Venezuela as part of a favorable oil supply mechanism.

The six Haitian governments that have been successful since 2008 have launched projects worth almost two billion dollars without usually worrying about the basic principles of public money management, the audit accuses.

The Haitian Court of Auditors also condemned the lack of cooperation from the institutions, which hindered its investigative work. For example, the judges could not trace a single contract for the construction of an industrial park and 1,500 houses on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince: which was the most ambitious public urban development project initiated. after the 2010 earthquake stopped in 2014.

No prosecution

However, more than $ 46 million has been paid to a single company, Constructora ROFI SA, which belongs to Dominican Senator Félix Bautista, sanctioned for corruption by the US Treasury Department in June 2018.

In their previous report on the PetroCaribe Fund, the judges had attached the current president of the republic, Jovenel Moïse, accused of having been at the heart of an “embezzlement system” before he took office.

Against the recommendations of the Court of Auditors and despite popular demonstrations organized since 2018, Haitian justice has not yet been prosecuted against the dozens of former ministers and senior leaders involved in the PetroCaribe scandal.

With AFP