Originally posted at the Sacramento Bee, July 15th, 2012
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — About a thousand people in Haiti have turned up to celebrate the 59th birthday of former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.
The two-time president did not show up at a public event at the foundation named for him but his wife, Mildred, spoke briefly on his behalf.
The former first lady presented a new book of poetry written by Aristide in Haitian Creole that includes Swahili proverbs. The book is called, Haiti – Haitii? Philosophical Poetry for Mental Decolonization.
Aristide has remained in his compound on the northeastern edge of the capital since he returned last year following a seven-year exile.
The one-time Roman Catholic priest served two separate presidential terms and was ousted both times. He lived in South Africa after a rebellion toppled him in 2004.