Haiti: Senate Unanimous to Remove Three Supreme Court Justices


PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (defend.ht) – The Senate on Wednesday resolved unanimously to remove Chief Justice Anel Alexis Joseph and Justices, Kesner Michel Thermési and Frantzi Philémon.

The vote of 17 senators passed on Wednesday afternoon requested that President Michel Martelly immediately withdraw the appointment order to the Court of Appeals (Supreme Court/Cour de Cassation) the three justices.

Senator Jean William Jeanty worded the reasoning as the “three judges were misnamed.” Senators say if President Martelly decides to ignore the resolution, he would choose to enter into confrontation with the senate.

The process of removing justices from the Supreme Court requires an impeachment. Two-thirds of the Chamber of Deputies must vote to indict the justice and two-thirds of the senate must pass a verdict. It is not clear if in these cases, an impeachment is necessary.

Before the resolution Martelly had said the matter of removing justices from the court was out of his hands because the high court officials had already been sworn in. As of yet, DH has not received a statement from the National Palace since the resolution was taken.

Chief Justice Joseph, 74, would have falsely identified his age at the time he was nominated by the senate according to one source but details on that allegation are not clear. Anel Alexis Joseph has been on the roll of possible justices since 2007, even then he would have still been over the age of nomination of 65.

The other two justices, Kesner Michel Thermési and Frantzi Philémon, were not even approved by the Senate to be placed on the Supreme Court according to the former President of the Senate, at the time the nominations were made, who is now the Minister of Defense, Jean Rodolphe Joazile. Joazile stated firmly that these two individuals were not approved by the senate and that some time during the transmission of the list from the Senate to the National Palace, alterations were made to the document.

Senator Jean-Charles Moise (Nord/Inite) believes Presidential Advisers and former Senators Youri Latortue and Joseph Lambert would be behind the misdeed, led by President Michel Martelly. There is no proof or ongoing investigation into Senator Moise’s claim.


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