New prime minister named
President Michel Martelly has appointed entrepreneur Daniel-Gerard Rouzier as his prime minister, the first major selection of his new administration, Chamber of Deputies president Saurel Jacynthe said. A member of Martelly’s Cabinet, who did not wish to be identified, had previously said that Martelly had “written to the presidents of the two chambers of Parliament to let them know he has chosen Mr Daniel Rouzier as his prime minister.” To be confirmed, Rouzier must receive a favorable vote in each of the parliament’s two chambers, which are dominated by the Inite party of former president Rene Preval.
‘Baby Doc’ summoned
Former president Jean-Claude Duvalier was summoned to a meeting on Friday morning before an investigating magistrate, Duvalier lawyer Reynold George said. He did not say which of the complaints against Duvalier he was referring to. Duvalier returned home in January after 25 years in exile and has been accused by the government of corruption, embezzlement of public funds and association with known criminal elements. He has also been subject to numerous complaints filed against him for crimes against humanity, including arbitrary arrest, torture and illegal detention. Since his return, “Baby Doc” has been able to move around the capital, although his residence in the hills surrounding the capital is video-monitored.
Fire guts cell block
A fire swept through a cell block in a prison in the town of Apodaca at about 3am on Friday, killing 14 inmates, Nuevo Leon State government spokesman Jorge Domene said. He said the wing had once been the prison’s psychiatric ward, but was currently being used as a standard cell block. He said the fire was under investigation and there were no further details. The blaze may have been caused by a short circuit, possibly in a television set, said an official with the Nuevo Leon State Public Safety Department, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak about the fire.
Diana dresses up for sale
Fourteen dresses worn by Diana, Princess of Wales, including a blue silk velvet gown she wore to a 1985 White House dinner, will be put up for sale next month, their Florida owner said on Friday. The value of most of the dresses in the collection ranges between US$175,000 to US$550,000, said Waddington’s, the Canadian auction house that will handle the sale in Toronto on June 23. The blue gown, however, is listed at between US$1 million and US$1.25 million. Diana was wearing it when she famously danced with US actor John Travolta at a White House dinner hosted by former US president Ronald Reagan and his wife, Nancy.
Harper visits Slave Lake
Prime Minister Stephen Harper surveyed charred ruins in an Alberta town on Friday where a raging wildfire destroyed a third of the homes and businesses. The fire forced the evacuation of nearly all 7,000 residents of Slave Lake last weekend, after strong winds suddenly shifted the flames toward the town. The prime minister got a look at the devastation on the ground and from a helicopter. He also met with emergency workers, exhausted firefighters and the mayor. He said afterwards that it was a miracle no one was killed.