Presidential hopeful Alexis set to appear at Mattapan forum

Former Haitian Prime Minister Jacques Edouard Alexis, who is a candidate for president in the upcoming November 28th election in Haiti, is scheduled to appear at a forum on Saturday, September 25 from 5-9p.m. at the Mattapan Center for Life, 555 River St in Mattapan.

A recently formed organization, the Coalition for Law and Justice (COJUST) says Alexis' appearance is part of a series of community forums that it is sponsoring with presidential candidates. This series began on Saturday, September 11th, in which invited presidential candidate Garaudy Laguerre was scheduled to make an appearance. However, due to an address mix-up in local radio promos, attendance was sparse. Laguerre declined to enter the venue, according to one of his representatives. He didn't see it fitting to appear before such a small group.

David Petit-Frêre, the executive director of the COJUST group, says he is a lawyer and former police officer in Haiti. He formed the Mattapan-based organization, which was registered as a non-profit corporation in Massachusetts in June 2010, to "put Haiti in the spotlight and get the diaspora in connection" with political leaders in Haiti. On its website, the organization says its mission is "to support and promote a state of law and practical judicial reform in Haiti." The group is presently seeking 501(c)(3) recognition in Massachusetts, Petit-Frêre told the Reporter.

Petit-Frêre says that other candidates have been invited by the organization to come to Boston, but that only Laguerre and Alexis have accepted to date.

"We're still talking to them," he said on Sept. 21.