March 8, 2023 | By Colin O. Jarrett |
Yves Jean-Bart, who’s lifetime ban from the sport over sexual abuse allegations, was overturned last month and announced that he is reclaiming his position as Haiti’s former soccer federation President.
His defiant announcement could lead to a stand-off with FIFA, which already has appointed an emergency management committee to lead the Haitian Football Association through November. Jean-Bart’s virtual news conference was held on Wednesday, a week after Haiti’s female soccer team beat Chile 2-1 in a historic match and qualified for the FIFA Women’s World Cup finals for the first time, sparking jubilant celebration across the country.
Jean-Bart has denied allegations by the FIFA ethics committee, which issued a lifetime ban after finding him guilty in 2020 of sexually abusing female players as young as 14, keeping mistresses and preying upon girls from impoverished neighbours.
The Switzerland-based Court of Arbitration for Sport overturned the ban two weeks ago, ruling there were inconsistencies and inaccuracies in statements of alleged victims. The court also said that information provided by groups such as Human Rights watch and world players union FIFPRO were not “sufficiently evidentiary”.