Growing up on a rural sugar plantation in Trou du Nord, a commune in northeast Haiti, Jovenel Moïse developed an early interest in agricultural farming and its possibility to transform a country for the better.
“Since I was a child, I was always wondering why people were living in such conditions while enormous lands were empty,” he was quoted as saying. “I believe agriculture is the key to change for this country.”
An unknown figure in Haiti until former president Michel Martelly hand-picked him in 2015 to represent the Haitian Tèt Kale Party (PHTK) in the 2016 election, Moïse would come to be known nationally as “Neg Bannan-n,” because he owned a 25-acre plantain plantation. Plantains, a cousin of banana plants, are a staple of Haitian cuisine called “bannan-n” in Creole. Thus, the moniker erroneously translated as banana in English.
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