These Haitian Rights Group Want An Investigation Into Football Sex Abuse Allegations

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FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura presenting a pennant to Yves Jean-Bart president of the Haiti Football Association during the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup France 2018 group D match between Haiti and China PR at on August 6, 2018 in Saint-Malo, France. (Photo by Catherine Ivill - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
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News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. May 8, 2020: Several human rights organizations in Haiti have called on the Justice ministry to investigate sexual abuse claims against the president of the president of the Fédération Haïtienne De Football (FHF), Yves Jean-Bart.

The call comes on the heels of a shocking report by the UK Guardian that Jean-Bart, known as “Dadou,” coerced several players within the last five years at the Centre Technique National in Croix-des-Bouquets into having sex with him.

Jean-Bart has denied the allegations claiming the allegations are being made to “to oust him from the presidency of the FHF” after he was elected for the sixth time in February.

“There is a lady who works there who puts pressure on the girls to have sex with Dadou,” one alleged victim quoted in the Guardian story said. “He will see a nice girl who is attractive and he sends the lady to tell her that she is going to be thrown out of the centre. She starts crying and then the lady says: ‘The only way to resolve this is to speak to Dadou.’ At that moment, the young girl has no choice but to put up with sexual abuse.”

Now The Solidarite Fanm Ayisyèn (Sofa), the Office de la Protection du Citoyen and Kay Fanm, women’s rights organizations in Haiti want an immediate investigation launched.

FIA for its part has said it has sent the information contained in the Guardian’s article to its independent ethics committee. “Concacaf [Fifa’s governing body in North and Central America] has also been contacted and will collaborate in the investigation,” the paper quoted FIFA as saying. “If cases of sexual abuse have happened or are happening in Haitian football, we want this to stop urgently, we want the criminals to be arrested and victims to be appropriately protected and cared for by the relevant local agencies and organizations who have responsibility for children’s welfare.”