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Wyclef Jean Celebrates Birthday Amid Scandal

Even in the midst of a charity scandal, Wyclef Jean is unafraid to show his good spirits on his birthday. The former Fugee posted a photo of himself via Twitter, posing ontop of his American-flag themed Ducati motorcycle, and sporting only a pair of blue and red briefs.

“TODAY I AM 43 YEARS OLD!” he wrote. “I look And feel 26! U cant keep a good Man down! Keep a smile when they want you to frown!”

Wyclef’s Yele Haiti foundation was closed down in September, swamped with debt and a number of uncompleted projects. As reported by The New York Times, Yele Haiti spent $256,580 on illegal benefits and improper transactions like private flights and chauffeurs. While he can’t be found personally responsible for the misappropriated funds, the rapper-singer, and current ambassador for Haiti has been targeted with criticism.

“When you start an organization, there are gonna be mistakes, but the mistakes were never us banking money in our pockets to get rich on behalf of our people,” he told MTV News during a September interview. “When those kind of mistakes are made within governance, you bring in new accountants, new governance, and that’s what we did.”

“The legacy of Yele Haiti and why people trust in Yele Haiti is because it’s not something I created when the earthquake came,” he continued. “This is something I created in 2005. Always remember this: If you decide that you’re not just gonna be musician, you’re not gonna just be a rapper, you’re gonna stand up for something and be in the forefront of it, you’re gonna get challenged constantly.”

In 2007, Jean was appointed as a Haitian Goodwill Ambassador by the country’s former president Rene Preval. After the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, he tried to run for president, only to have his bid for candidacy rejected. Wyclef has maintained that his political and social activism on behalf of Haiti has been completely genuine, and that his intentions will outlive his critics.

“When history tells its tale to define the truth … one thing about history, as history goes it will protect me,” he said. “So there’s one thing that you might feel now, but 70 years from now, a hundred years from now, when you’re not around, facts come out. So history will always be on my side because the truth eventually ends up coming out.”

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