Pierre Labossiere, co-founder of Haiti Action Committee and a critic of Moïse, expressed his concern during the forum that the president's killing could signal greater intervention by the U.S. in Haitian politics.
"Jovenel Moïse is but the latest in a series of heads of state in Haiti who have been lackeys of the colonialist powers," Labossiere said.
According to Haiti's constitution, Moïse should be replaced by the president of Haiti's Supreme Court, but the chief justice died last month from COVID-19, leaving open the question of who might rightfully succeed the office.
But Labossiere has little faith in whoever is the next head of state. For him, real change in Haiti will come when much larger factors, like the lack of trustworthy and transparent democratic institutions, are addressed.
"The dictator is no more, but the dictatorship system that these colonial powers have set up is still there," he said, including the U.S., France and other Western actors in this category.
The death of Moïse and the political instability it represents, Labossiere explained, are inseparable from the economic and social instability Haitian civilians have experienced for decades, forcing many to leave the country.
"It's important that we support our brothers and sisters who have fled Haiti. They need our support," he said. "But unless we connect that with supporting their movement, at home, as they are standing up and fighting ... then [we] are missing the point."
This story includes reporting from KQED's Tara Siler and Carlos Cabrera-Lomelí, the Associated Press and NPR's Joe Hernandez and Carrie Kahn.