It was a short campaign season for Wyclef Jean, who announced on Thursday, August 8, that he would be running for president of Haiti. However, Haiti’s Provisional Electoral Council rejected Jean along with 14 other possible candidates on Friday (August 20) while it approved 19 others. Although the council offered no reason for Jean’s exclusion on the list, he said they had ruled he was not a resident of the country.
Wyclef issued the following statement:
“I respectfully accept the committee’s final decision, and I urge my supporters to do the same. This has come to our party and to our group as a total shock. I want to assure my countrymen that I will continue to work for Haiti’s renewal; though the board has determined that I am not a resident of Haiti, home is where the heart is — and my heart has and will always be in Haiti. This ruling just tells me that I can’t officially seek the office of president.”
On Friday night, Jean said he would not contest the ruling, adding “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. 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.”