Wyclef Jean Defends His Yele Haiti Foundation
January 19, 2010 at 12:45 PM (PT)
In a YOUTUBE posting, HAITIAN-born musician WYCLEF JEAN defended himself against reports that he benefited personally from his Haitian relief charity, saying, "Not only I denounce all of that, I’m disgusted by that."
THE NEW YORK TIMES reports the website THESMOKINGGUN.COM "posted a report that said that the YÉLE HAITI FOUNDATION, the charity that JEAN has promoted since the Haitian earthquake, 'has a lackluster history of accounting for its finances.' THE SMOKING GUN, citing INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE records, said that the foundation had paid JEAN and a business partner for rent, production services and JEAN’s appearance at a benefit concert, and filed taxes for the first time in AUGUST, despite having incorporated 12 years ago."
JEAN responded to the charges in a video, saying he had "always been committed to the people" of HAITI.
JEAN is set to host "Hope for HAITI," a benefit telethon that will air on FRIDAY. THE TIMES writes "In a news conference on MONDAY, JEAN reiterated his defense of the foundation. 'Have we made mistakes before?' he said. 'Yes. Did I ever use YÉLE money for personal benefits? Absolutely not.' He added that the foundation’s books were 'open and transparent,' and were given 'a clean bill of health by an external auditor every year since we started.'"