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No word yet on Wyclef


marciadottin, [email protected]

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PORT-AU-PRINCE – Haiti waited anxiously yesterday for an announcement on whether Wyclef Jean, the hip-hop star, will be allowed to run for president of the country that he left as a child for the United States.Haiti’s electoral commission was expected to publish a list of candidates deemed to have met the eligibility requirements yesterday, but the release was not certain. The commission had delayed its publication of the list earlier this week, and some Haitian news reports said the announcement would be made “by the weekend at the latest”.But with reports already circulating that he had been barred from running, some tensions were evident. On Thursday night, Jean’s fans demonstrated in front of the electoral commission building in the Delmas area of Port-au-Prince, chanting, “We want Clef, Clef is Haiti and Haiti is for Clef.”The Haitian Press Association reported that the United Nations peacekeeping forces were ready and waiting in case of any unrest after the announcement.Jean, who was reported to be holed up in his home in Laserre, outside the capital, has been considered a potential front-runner from the moment he announced his candidacy for the presidency of the earthquake-battered country in the first week of August.Reuters, citing an unidentified member of the electoral commission, reported that Jean had been excluded from the race because he did not meet eligibility requirements of living in Haiti for five consecutive years before the November 28 vote.The electoral commission’s spokesman would not confirm the Reuters report, and a message posted on Jean’s Twitter feed yesterday morning suggested that he, too, was still waiting.“We await the decision of the Electoral Council, to see if I made the list as a candidate,” the message said. “As it is written so shall it be done!”The Haitian newspaper Le Nouvelliste reported yesterday that an electoral commission member met with several local journalists on Thursday and said that Jean would not be among the eligible candidates. Le Nouvelliste quoted the unnamed member of the commission as saying that there have been several meetings on the subject with members of the electoral commission, representatives of the president’s office and of several embassies.(Reuters)

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