From hip-hop star to presidential contender, Wyclef Jean has thrown his hat into the ring to be the next leader of Haiti.
He was given an enthusiastic welcome in Port-au -Prince.
But not everyone is happy.
Film star and activist Sean Penn has accused Jean of being a “non-presence” in the earthquake-hit country, repeating claims the singer’s foundation for Haiti had misused funds.
Jean defended himself against Penn’s criticism.
“I just want Sean Penn to fully understand that I am a Haitian, born in Haiti,” he said. “Before speaking about my situation that has to do with Wyclef Jean in public, thus far, he might just want to pick up the phone and we meet so he fully understands the man,” he added.
Jean has US residency and the singer’s candidacy still needs to be approved by authorities in Haiti where others are sceptical too.
“When you analyse the situation, there are people who said, ‘it is pretty bad to have now Mr Wyclef Jean to pretend to become president of Haiti.’ It is a sign of national and even international distress of this country,” said lawyer and political leader Wesner Fevry.
Former Fugees star Jean has denied any misuse of funds. While his musical abilities have made him a three-time Grammy award-winner, his political skills remain untested as he looks to November’s election.