After spending the last few days in limbo, it was announced last night that Wyclef Jean is not allowed to run for President of Haiti, because he did not meet his native land’s requirements for office, stating that all candidates have lived in the country for the last five years.
In a statement Clef said he will not contest the ruling. “I was inspired to run for president because I know Haiti can become great with the right leadership, and I believe I could be that leader,” he said. “But ultimately, we must respect the rule of law in order for our island to become the great nation we all aspire for it to be.”
‘Clef first officially announced his intentions to run for the highest office on the island on August 5.
Even before the decision was made, the former member of The Fugees member made clear his intentions to work towards social change in Haiti—whether or not he held political office. “If I’m turned down…what we will do is—we have the movement for the youth, which is called Fas a Fas and the political party, which is called Vive a Sum, living together,” he told Larry King. “We will continue to fight…to give kids [a good education], which is one of the number one things in the Constitution, the Haitian Constitution, says all kids should have privilege to a free education. And that’s something that we’re going to push on, whether I make it or not.”
Pras, a Haiti-American himself, was not supporting the campaign of his former groupmate. “I endorse Michel Martell as the next president of Haiti because he is the most competent candidate for the job,” he said earlier this month in a statement.
The Haitian Press Association has reported that United Nations peacekeeping forces are in Haiti ready to handle any possible incidents that arise in light of the decision. Clef had already received death threats on the heels of his announcement and was reportedly in hiding earlier this week. —Adam Fleischer