A worker tries to extinguish a burning vehicle that belongs to Radio Tele-Ginen
A worker tries to extinguish a burning vehicle that belongs to Radio Tele-Ginen

Haitian media outlets urge people ‘to stop attacking reporters’ after radio journalist Rospide Petion was shot dead.

Media organisations in Haiti demanded police protection on Tuesday after the killing of a radio journalist who reported on corruption allegations against President Jovenel Moise’s administration.

An unidentified gunman shot journalist Rospide Petion, 45, as he drove home late on Monday in a car owned by Radio Sans Fin.

“The press is for everyone. To inform everyone. In all kinds of situations,” the Haitian media organisations said in a statement, adding that everyone is free to follow the media they choose.

“These days are not good for journalists and media,” Frantz Duval, editor of Le Nouvelliste newspaper, said on Twitter on Tuesday.

Monday’s shooting came amid days of sometimes violent street protests calling for the resignation of Moise, during which several journalists have been attacked.

Some protesters accuse certain media outlets of being pro-government.

On Sunday, a photographer with Le Nouvelliste was injured by a rubber bullet, and protesters tried to attack a videographer with Radio Television Nationale D’Haiti.

On Monday, reporters with Radio Tele Ginen were attacked with rocks as protesters vandalised their cars.

Moise issued a statement on Tuesday saying Petion’s killing was a “heinous act” that weighed heavily on Haiti’s press.

“I vehemently condemn this villainous crime,” he said.

Petion was married and had three children.

Corruption allegations

The judges of the High Court of Auditors said in a report last week that Moise was at the centre of an “embezzlement scheme” that had siphoned off Venezuelan aid money intended for road repairs.

The judges’ report laid out a litany of examples of corruption and mismanagement. Continue reading

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