Yele Haiti, a Haitian charity set up by musician Wyclef Jean, took in over $16 million after the massive earthquake, last year, that killed around 316,000 people. However, only one-third of that actually went to Haiti’s quake victims, The New York Post reported.
A full $1 million event went to a company in Florida, Amisphere Farm Labor, Inc., that legally does not exist. The charity also paid $353,983 to a contractor run by Jean’s brother-in-law, the paper noted.
Jean, for his part, has not been a leading member of the Yele Haiti charity since his bid for the country’s presidency in 2010.
“The Post conveniently fails to acknowledge that the decisions that Yele made were a response to one of the world’s most catastrophic natural disasters in modern history and required an immediate humanitarian response,” Jean said in a published statement. “We made decisions that enabled us to provide emergency assistance in the midst of chaos and we stand by those decisions.”
He added that Amisphere Farm Labor, Inc. provided “close to 100,000 meals.”
“I have acknowledged that Yele has made mistakes in the past, including being late in IRS filings, but that is old news,” Jean said. “When I entered politics last summer, I transitioned from being a board member and chairman of Yele Haiti to a supporter. The new and good news is that Yele under new leadership, despite efforts to undermine its credibility and effectiveness, continues its mission to serve people in need.”
Jean’s bid for Haiti’s presidency was brought to a premature end last year when officials determined he was not eligible due to his residency in the U.S.