Thursday, August 26, 2010

UK Guardian-Wyclef Jean Cannot Appeal Haiti Presidency Ruling

Wyclef Jean:Jemal Countess/Getty Images
(Story reported by Sean Michaels for the UK Guardian)

Electoral council tells singer its decision to disqualify him from the Haiti presidential race is final.

The door has slammed shut for the second time in Wyclef Jean's bid to become president of Haiti. According to the country's electoral council, the singer cannot appeal against his disqualification from the race. With officials refusing to review his file, Jean will now reportedly file a complaint with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.

"Wyclef does not intend to stop here," explained Jean Renel Senatus, a member of his legal team. "We will exhaust all options, we will go all the way to fight this unacceptable decision." Last week, Jean was one of 15 proposed candidates disqualified from Haiti's presidential race, with the provisional electoral council citing the country's five-year residency requirement. Although Jean initially said he "accepted" the ruling, he later announced plans to appeal. "Friends ... warned me that much trickery would be used to block me," he said. "[This] has proved true."

A representative for the council's legal department declared yesterday that their decision cannot be challenged, citing article 191 of Haiti's electoral law. "When it comes to electoral matters, the electoral council is the supreme court, meaning there is nowhere else to go," Samuel Pierre said. "There is absolutely no possibility for Wyclef Jean to be added to the list of candidates approved to run in the next presidential elections. So it's over."

(Click here to read the full story on the UK Guardian website.)

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