NEWS

Three Men Vie For Haiti’s Head Of State Position

Photo Credit: Jaume Ollé/Wikimedia Commons.
Photo Credit: Jaume Ollé/Wikimedia Commons.

Haiti will again attempt to resolve its leadership crisis — a problem which continues to plague the country over the years.

Presidential elections were held in Haiti on 25 October 2015, alongside local elections and the second round of the legislative elections.

However, as no candidate received a majority of the vote in the first round, a runoff was to be held on 27 December 2015.

On 22 December the Conseil Electoral Provisoire announced that the runoff has been postponed indefinitely.

On 1 January 2016, the incumbent President Michel Martelly announced that the runoff would be held on 17 January, but on 7 January the President changed the date to 24 January.

Amidst protest, rioting and electoral violence, the run-off date was postponed to 24 April 2016.

Now, three people have been named to contest the post of interim head of state. These include the President of the National Assembly, Privert Jocelerme, Edgard Fils Leblanc, who served as president of the Senate between 1995-2000 and Belizaire Dejean, who served as president of the Senate in August 1991, a month before the coup that overthrew then President Jean Bertrand Aristide.

Under the terms of the agreement reached earlier this month, Parliament will elect an interim President for a term of 120 days and confirm a consensus Prime Minister. Continuation of the elections process to the second round will take place on 24 April.

The new President, elected by that process, will be installed on 14 May 2016, but the interim head of state will be installed on Sunday.

Opposition parties had called for the establishment of an interim administration to oversee fresh elections in the country and had taken to the streets protesting the outcome of the first round of balloting on 24 August last year as well as preventing the staging of the second round of the presidential elections on 24 January this year.

Yvad Billings, Readers Bureau, Fellow

Edited by Jesus Chan

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