Omaj pou Ayiti

Haitian President Michel Martelly Says He Almost Died

Haitian President Michel Martelly said it’s by the grace of God that he is alive.

“I didn’t die because God wasn’t ready for me to die,” Martelly told Haitian radio host Alex Saint-Surin in a live broadcast Wednesday from North Miami Beach.

It was Martelly’s first public appearance since he arrived in Miami nine days ago seeking treatment for pain after shoulder surgery earlier this month. Martelly looked healthy but tired as he recounted his near-death experience that at one point had a team of six doctors in Haiti keeping vigil over him.

“I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t talk, I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t stand. I couldn’t lay down, I couldn’t do anything,” Martelly said. “My stomach was compressed. It felt as if three people were pressing down on it.”

That was 2 a.m. on April 15, Martelly said. By the next afternoon, he was on a flight to Miami. He spent two days at the University of Miami Hospital. Dr. Reginald Pereira, who joined Martelly on the broadcast, said he’s awaiting additional tests before he allows the president to return to Haiti. Martelly has been recovering at a Miami hotel since leaving the hospital on April 18.

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