Wyclef hits back at Penn claims
Wyclef Jean has responded to claims made by Sean Penn that he hadn't spent enough time in earthquake-stricken Haiti.
The singer, who has put himself in the running to be the island's president, fumed when he found out that actor Sean, who has been managing an earthquake-survivor camp in the Haitian capital since the spring, had accused Jean of not spending enough time in Haiti.
"I just want Sean Penn to fully understand I am a Haitian, born in Haiti and I've been coming to my country ever since (I was) a child," he said. "He might just want to pick up the phone and meet, so he fully understands the man."
Oscar-winning Sean had said previously: "He has been virtually silent for those of us in Haiti, he has been a non-presence."
Wyclef also responded to claims published this week on website The Smoking Gun concerning his unpaid US taxes.
"First of all, owing 2.1 million to the IRS shows you how much money Wyclef Jean makes a year," he said, pledging to publish an accounting of his finances online and to repay the money he owes.
If he wins the presidency, the ex-Fugee frontman said he would encourage donors to invest heavily in education. He also endorsed the economic vision promoted by former US President Bill Clinton, the UN special envoy who is in Haiti this week.
But Wyclef said of his campaign: "Even if I lose, I win," he said. "It gives us an opportunity to be a voice to speak to government about what happens."