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Thread started 07/27/10 8:38am

DakutiusMaximu
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Wyclef to Run for Haitian Presidency?

President Wyclef? Ex-Fugee mulling Haiti campaign

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) -- Singer Wyclef Jean is considering a run for president of Haiti but has not decided whether to seek a five-year term as leader of the quake-ravaged nation, the musician's family said Monday.

There have been rumors for some time the Haitian-born entertainer might enter the 2010 presidential contest, ever since his 2007 appointment as ambassador-at-large for the Caribbean nation by President Rene Preval, who cannot seek re-election.

In a statement e-mailed to reporters, the family said, "Wyclef's commitment to his homeland and its youth is boundless, and he will remain its greatest supporter regardless of whether he is part of the government moving forward ... If and when a decision is made, media will be alerted immediately."

The letter was signed "The Jean Family." A spokeswoman for the musician confirmed the message's authenticity.

Jean, 37, was born on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince but left the hemisphere's poorest country as a child and grew up in New York City's borough of Brooklyn.

He told The Associated Press in a recent interview he intended to be involved in the Nov. 28 election, but not necessarily as a candidate.

"Do I have political intentions? At this time no. But what I do have is a movement — it's called Face a Face, 'Face to Face'," Jean said. "The youth population ... we are going to encourage them to vote."

The singer has been active in recent years in raising money through his Yele Haiti Foundation. The organization was widely criticized for alleged financial irregularities after the Jan. 12 quake, when scrutiny revealed it had paid Jean to perform at fundraising events and bought advertising air time from a television station he co-owns.

The organization hired a new accounting firm after the allegations surfaced.

Jean, who said he voted for Preval in 2006, would not have an easy road as a candidate. Haitian elections are contentious and often violent.

Dozens of candidates are expected to declare themselves by the Aug. 7 deadline. Preval's opponents have threatened to block the Nov. 28 vote if he does not replace the presidentially approved electoral council, which he has refused to do.

To enter the race, Jean would have to prove he has resided in Haiti for five consecutive years, own property in the country and have never been a citizen of any country other than Haiti.

Whoever wins will face the gargantuan task of rebuilding a country devastated by the Jan. 12 earthquake. Haiti has not had a functioning economy in decades and its presidents have only rarely completed a constitutional five-year term — more typically being overthrown, getting assassinated, declaring themselves "president-for-life" or some combination of the three.

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Reply #1 posted 07/27/10 9:07am

etifaim

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Very interesting.

"For those who know the number and don't call...Fuck all y'all"
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Reply #2 posted 07/27/10 10:40am

PDogz

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If he ran, he'd no doubt probably win. And THAT would be very interesting. Actually, I'd LOVE to see that happen.

"There's Nothing That The Proper Attitude Won't Render Funkable!"

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Reply #3 posted 07/28/10 9:28am

missfee

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Hmm, I don't know if this should be considered a good thing or a bad thing.
I will forever love and miss you...my sweet Prince.
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Reply #4 posted 07/28/10 10:42am

PurpleJedi

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I don't know much about Wyclef's credentials, but he clearly has a love for Haiti and wishes to do good.

Based on THAT ALONE, he's probably the BEST candidate for the presidency. If he has the tenacity to navigate the complicated power cells of Haitian society, then he may very well be able to turn things around.

Of course, there's always the chance that he could win the election, then be proven to be inept and not be able to do a damned thing to make any positive changes.

shrug c'est la vie.

By St. Boogar and all the saints at the backside door of Purgatory!
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Reply #5 posted 07/28/10 11:20am

namepeace

Jean has been accused of mismanaging his non-profit for his personal gain.

Not a good background for a candidate to lead a country already victimized by generations of ethically compromised leaders.

Good night, sweet Prince | 7 June 1958 - 21 April 2016

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
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Reply #6 posted 07/28/10 4:54pm

TheResistor

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namepeace said:

Jean has been accused of mismanaging his non-profit for his personal gain.

Not a good background for a candidate to lead a country already victimized by generations of ethically compromised leaders.

I've read about that too. How could anyone consider a pop star equipped to run a country? Hell, just look at the mess California is in with its own celebrity leader.

rainbow

"...literal people are scary, man
literal people scare me
out there trying to rid the world of its poetry
while getting it wrong fundamentally
down at the church of "look, it says right here, see!" - ani difranco
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Reply #7 posted 07/28/10 5:57pm

PurpleJedi

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TheResistor said:

namepeace said:

Jean has been accused of mismanaging his non-profit for his personal gain.

Not a good background for a candidate to lead a country already victimized by generations of ethically compromised leaders.

I've read about that too. How could anyone consider a pop star equipped to run a country? Hell, just look at the mess California is in with its own celebrity leader.

falloff

By St. Boogar and all the saints at the backside door of Purgatory!
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Reply #8 posted 07/28/10 6:16pm

PDogz

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I realize my opinion is in the minority (...if not the lone voice, lol), but I have a feeling that not only would he win (should he run), but that he would be an amazing President who would go down in history as having turned Haiti around into a productive country. For one thing, I'm sure he's familiar with where the corruption is in the current Haitian government. With the power of the Presidency, he may be able to shake some things up down there.

The thing is, we're all human, and I believe that even he had admitted that there some errors or mishandling with some of his organizations finances; but I believe Wyclef's heart is in the right place, and I think he feels strongly about Haiti. Though I can't speak for the Haitian people.

Call me a dreamer, to be kind.

"There's Nothing That The Proper Attitude Won't Render Funkable!"

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Reply #9 posted 07/29/10 6:27am

Tokyo89

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I say go for it!

She Don't Speak..But She Remembers
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Reply #10 posted 08/03/10 8:35pm

DakutiusMaximu
s

Ex-deputy: Wyclef Jean to run for Haiti president

  • Wyclef JeanAP – FILE - This May 20, 2008 file photo shows Wyclef Jean speaking during a news conference in New York. …

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti – Singer Wyclef Jean is about to announce his candidacy for president of earthquake-ravaged Haiti, the former head of the country's Chamber of Deputies said Tuesday.

Former Deputy Pierre Eric Jean-Jacques told The Associated Press that the hip hop artist will run as part of his coalition in the Nov. 28 election.

Jean spokeswoman Cindy Tanenbaum declined to confirm the report. She said the singer planned to make an announcement Thursday night in Haiti but declined to say what it would be.

Jean-Jacques, who will be seeking to return to the Chamber of Deputies in the election, said he will be a candidate for a new coalition that calls itself Ansanm Nou Fo, which translates as "together we are strong" in Creole.

"Yes, we have an agreement (with Jean). But he's the one who has to announce it first," Jean-Jacques told AP, declining to elaborate on their political plans.

Jean is popular in Haiti for his music and for his work through his charity Yele Haiti, which raised millions of dolars after the Jan. 12 earthquake that killed an estimated 300,000 people and knocked down most of the government ministries and many of the homes in the capital.

Rumors have swirled for months that Jean would run for president. The singer has always been careful not to rule out a run for the office and recorded a song "If I was President."

The 37-year-old was born outside Port-au-Prince but left as a child and grew up in Brooklyn.

Dozens of candidates are expected to compete for the presidency in the Nov. 28 election, among them Jean's uncle Raymond Joseph, who is Haiti's ambassador in Washington. Other likely candidates include former prime ministers, mayors and another popular Haitian musician, Michel "Sweet Micky" Martelly.

All must register their candidancies with the country's electoral council by Saturday. The electoral council's director of registration, Jean-Marie Lumier, said Tuesday he had not received papers for Jean's bid.

Questions surround Jean's qualifications for office. He must prove he has resided in Haiti for five consecutive years, own property in the country and have no other citizenship but Haitian. Officials have disqualified some candidates on technicalities while allowing others to run.

In 2007, the singer was named an official Haitian ambassador-at-large by President Rene Preval, whom Jean supported in his 2006 re-election bid. Preval has served two non-consecutive terms and is barred by the constitution from seeking office again.

In recent weeks Jean's Twitter feed has been awash with original and re-tweeted demands for transparent elections, proposals for reducing Haiti's chronic poverty and calls to defend camps of the estimated 1.6 million people made homeless by the quake from forced eviction.

Reaction to his possible candidacy has been divided as Haitians debate the pluses and minues of his inexperience. The musician has a strikingly different profile than the generals, technocrats and priests who have led it before, speaking little French and Haitian Creole with a diaspora accent.

"I will give him my vote. All these people who have been in Haiti haven't done anything for us," said Jean Leuis, a 22-year-old bread vendor.

Bosejour Leconte, a 34-year-old phone card seller who has been living in a tent since the earthquake, thought otherwise.

"I don't think he has the qualifications to be president. I'd rather vote for someone that has political experience," he said.

Jean-Jacques and other politicians, including a senator from ousted President Jean-Bertrand Aristide's Fanmi Lavalas party — which is not expected to be allowed to participate in the election — formed the Ansanm Nou Fo coalition ahead of February elections that were canceled because of the earthquake.

Haiti's next president will face an enormous task of rebuilding a country devastated by the Jan. 12 earthquake. But the office has never been an easy job: Presidents have only rarely completed a constitutional five-year term — most in history have been overthrown, assassinated, declared themselves "president-for-life" or some combination of the three.

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Reply #11 posted 08/03/10 11:23pm

PDogz

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Good for him! What an interesting life story he will have to tell before it's all over. As President; I bet he'll still perform! He might wind up being bigger than Elvis, lol.

"There's Nothing That The Proper Attitude Won't Render Funkable!"

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Reply #12 posted 08/03/10 11:30pm

PDogz

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DakutiusMaximus said:

Haiti's next president will face an enormous task of rebuilding a country devastated by the Jan. 12 earthquake. But the office has never been an easy job: Presidents have only rarely completed a constitutional five-year term — most in history have been overthrown, assassinated, declared themselves "president-for-life" or some combination of the three.

whofarted ...so shady, lol.

"There's Nothing That The Proper Attitude Won't Render Funkable!"

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Reply #13 posted 08/04/10 6:20am

nd33

Putting aside political credentials, it would be amazing to see an artistically inclined president of a country! I'd definitely welcome the potentially vastly different perspective on political issues. They don't have much to lose by giving him a crack by th general sounds of it... (hope that doesn't sound ignorant)
Music, sweet music, I wish I could caress and...kiss, kiss...
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Reply #14 posted 08/04/10 6:27am

xCece

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......

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Reply #15 posted 08/04/10 6:40am

Musicslave

I think it would be a great story. Whether or not he governs well is another story. That would remain to be seen. Besides, he would need to surround himself with the best cabinet (or whatever they call it in Haiti) as possible. I think his heart would be in the right place for the people. He'd just need the right experienced supporting cast to help him govern.

Side Note: It would be funny as hell, if he'd continue to do music while in office! lol Imagine that biggrin

"If I Was President"

[Edited 8/4/10 6:40am]

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Reply #16 posted 08/04/10 7:23am

Rico

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Will he run one time, or two time?

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Reply #17 posted 08/04/10 8:33am

PDogz

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Rico said:

Will he run one time, or two time?

lol I get it, lol. (...put your hands in the air!)

"There's Nothing That The Proper Attitude Won't Render Funkable!"

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Reply #18 posted 08/04/10 8:38am

PDogz

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Musicslave said:

Side Note: It would be funny as hell, if he'd continue to do music while in office! lol Imagine that biggrin

"If I Was President"

...and really, really cool. He would have that entire nation in the palm of his hand. The people would LOVE him. And Haiti would have "one-up'd" the United States on the whole 'having a cool President' thing, lol.

"There's Nothing That The Proper Attitude Won't Render Funkable!"

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Reply #19 posted 08/04/10 9:03am

alphastreet

As long as it doesn't require "singing" we are the world, I'm all for it!

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Reply #20 posted 08/04/10 9:12am

Musicslave

alphastreet said:

As long as it doesn't require "singing" we are the world, I'm all for it!

Amen lol OMG that was atrocious eek

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Reply #21 posted 08/04/10 9:35am

2freaky4church
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Will the American government kidnap him like they did Aristide? Or worse.

All you others say Hell Yea!! woot!
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Reply #22 posted 08/04/10 1:32pm

Reel

2freaky4church1 said:

Will the American government kidnap him like they did Aristide? Or worse.

Definitely have to be bedfellows with the United States in order to run Haiti at this point in time. The whole mismanagement of the Yele funds just left a bad taste in my mouth. If you have challenges running a charity without mismanagement...what's going to happen with the government finances of a known corrupt government...a governement who's previous presidents basically looted the entire country and left it for bankrupt? A grossly corrupt government who's officials are still in office.

Not saying that Wyclef could not run the country...however I'm mindful that it takes more than having Haiti in your heart and doing good deeds for the country to successfuly pull a country with the NEEDS of Haiti out of the horrible circumstances that it is in, and has been in for many many years. In addition, there are a lot more "hands in the pot" now since the earthquake. Other countries have donated millions and it's not like they are not going to want to have some "say" (whatever that entails) in the Haitian government. People just don't donate millions and then turn that backs on that money and say "good luck"..they are want to see what's going down.

I hope that whoever governs Haiti ends up doing a good job for that country. Not sure about the Wyclef thing...but we shall see.

Although I'm your biggest fan...I'm also your biggest critic. Can you deal with that?
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Reply #23 posted 08/04/10 1:36pm

Cinnie

Rico said:

Will he run one time, or two time?

lol

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Reply #24 posted 08/04/10 2:20pm

Timmy84

alphastreet said:

As long as it doesn't require "singing" we are the world, I'm all for it!

You know?! LOL lol

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Reply #25 posted 08/04/10 2:52pm

vainandy

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falloff

Andy is a four letter word.
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Reply #26 posted 08/04/10 2:55pm

vainandy

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TheResistor said:

namepeace said:

Jean has been accused of mismanaging his non-profit for his personal gain.

Not a good background for a candidate to lead a country already victimized by generations of ethically compromised leaders.

I've read about that too. How could anyone consider a pop star equipped to run a country? Hell, just look at the mess California is in with its own celebrity leader.

And also a president like Ronald Reagan. People in entertainment need do not need to run for elections. lol

Andy is a four letter word.
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Reply #27 posted 08/04/10 4:45pm

2freaky4church
1

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There's a video of Bill Clinton admitting he fucked up when he made Haitians buy American rice, which made their farmers become broke, where they had to go into the city and work at sweatshops that made, among other things, Disney Clothes.

All you others say Hell Yea!! woot!
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Reply #28 posted 08/04/10 7:49pm

BklynBabe

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If Ah-nald made it as "gub-nah" I don't see why Wyclef can't be President of Haiti...... hmmm

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Reply #29 posted 08/04/10 8:18pm

Reel

Haiti's needs are so vast, and so profound...I'm beginning to think that it needs to be run by a "Council" instead of one individual. If not a "council" then perhaps Capitalism is not what's going to make Haiti successful. Perhaps they need to explore other societal models. I'm just saying. I wish that I had the answer for that country, because I have a lot of friends from there and they are some pretty cool people.

Although I'm your biggest fan...I'm also your biggest critic. Can you deal with that?
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Forums > Music: Non-Prince > Wyclef to Run for Haitian Presidency?