Haiti Senate leader urges prime minister to resign over ‘not doing his job well’

The leader of Haiti’s Senate urged the country’s prime minister Sunday to step down, saying in a national address that the prime minister’s political agenda has set back the cause of sustainable development for the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere.

But leaders of Haiti’s parliament have yet to give authorizations for elections because they say too much money has been stolen from Haiti’s presidential and legislative candidates.

Haiti’s Supreme Court also hasn’t said whether it will accept appeals of a lower court’s ruling that annulled the 2018 legislative elections and ordered a new balloting. But there has been public outrage about the use of state assets for campaign expenses in the November elections that resulted in a by-election in the upper house.

President Jovenel Moise, who has sought the prime minister’s resignation, said in a statement Sunday that he’ll respect the Senate leader’s statement.

President Jovenel Moise on Friday urged the resignation of Haitian Prime Minister Jack Guy Lafontant. Image by: AP

The leader of Haiti’s Senate, Raphael Edouard Joseph, urged Prime Minister Jack Guy Lafontant to “step down as a way to move forward with the modernization process of the country.”

“The prime minister is not doing his job well. He does not work for progress nor toward stability,” he said on Sunday night.

Haiti’s Congress is expected to convene soon and consider this matter together. — Haiti Foreign Ministry (@prportalhaitii) February 17, 2019

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The international community has been looking to repeat the successful 2017 legislative elections and to set up the presidential election next year. In the latter, the president will be elected under a new political framework that will answer some of Haiti’s longstanding claims of unfair treatment by international donors.

No results from the upper house’s by-election in December were announced because the court could not consider appeals from candidates who lost the 2018 elections and as such electoral reform would be up to Haiti’s next government.

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