Wyclef Jean's Haiti Charity Finances Under Further Inspection
Wyclef Jean's troubled Yele Haiti charity is under further financial scrutiny amid reports the organization's vice president received a $42,000 salary increase in 2009.
According to tax filings obtained by the New York Post, Zakiya Khatou-Chevassus was paid $147,000 for her services in 2009 after being promoted from consultant to vice president. The sum is a $42,000 bump from 2008 and nearly $15,000 more than the charity's president, Hugh Locke.
The report emerges months after Jean blasted rumors linking him romantically to Khatou-Chevassus, who allegedly worked as his personal assistant prior to her involvement with Yele Haiti.
Tax returns also show the organization's executives spent $336,000 on staff compensation and $518,000 on programs in Haiti. Meanwhile, the charity's deficit reportedly crept up to nearly $600,000.
It's not the first time Jean's organization, founded in 2005 to provide emergency relief, education and employment in his native Haiti, has been dogged by scandal. The hip-hop star acknowledged financial missteps in a tearful public address last year, after it was revealed the organization paid out hundreds of thousands of dollars to businesses controlled by the former Fugees rapper and his partners.
However, the charity has continued to fare well in the public eye following Haiti's devastating earthquake last January, despite media scrutiny. Yele Haiti received a reported $14 million windfall in donations in the wake of the disaster.