Haiti’s President Jovenel Moise removed two top government officials yesterday as part of a purge of people linked to a corruption scandal that has ignited mass protests.

The cabinet chief and the secretary general of the presidency were removed from office along with 15 government advisers, an official announcement said.

“To have a healthy process, the president has decided to rid the environment of people linked to Petrocaribe without admitting they are guilty of anything,” the Prime Minister said at a news conference.

“The courts will say who is guilty and who is not.”

The move came five days after tens of thousands of people took to the streets in Port-au-Prince and other cities to protest corruption.

Investigations by the Haitian Senate in 2016 and 2017 concluded that nearly US$2 billion from a Venezuelan aid program called Petrocaribe were misused.

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