Politics of Haiti
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The Politics of Haiti have often been defined with conflict when strongmen have taken over the government. Only within the latter part of the twentieth century, has normal political activity transpired.
On February 29, 2004, a coup d'état ousted the popularly elected president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, allegedly with the assistance of the French and United States governments; U.S. and French soldiers were on the ground in Haiti at the time, recently arrived (See controversy). The first elections since the overthrow were held on February 8, 2006 to elect a new President. René Préval was declared to have won with over 50 percent of the vote. Runoff elections for legislative seats were held on April 21.
In 2008, Parliament voted to dismiss President Preval's Prime Minister following severe rioting over food prices. His selected replacement for the post was rejected by Parliament, throwing the country into a prolonged period without a government.
Yvon Neptune was appointed Prime Minister on March 4, 2002, but following the overthrow of the government in February 2004, he was replaced by an interim Prime Minister, Gérard Latortue. The constitutional Prime Minister, Yvon Neptune languished in jail for over a year, accused of complicity in an alleged massacre in Saint-Marc. United Nations officials, expressing scepticism towards the evidence, called for either due process or his release. Having entered custody in June 2004, Neptune was formally charged on September 20, 2005, but was never sent to trial. He was finally released on 28 July 2006. The last Prime Minister, Jacques-Édouard Alexis, entered office in 2006 and was removed in April 2008. Michèle Pierre-Louis received approval to become the next Prime Minister from both houses in July.
Political corruption is a common problem in Haiti. The country has consistently ranked as one of the most corrupt nations according to the Corruption Perceptions Index, a measure of perceived political corruption. In 2006, Haiti was ranked as the most corrupt nation out of the 163 that were surveyed for the Index. In 2012, Haiti was #165 out of #176. The International Red Cross reported that Haiti was 155th out of 159 countries in a similar survey of corrupt countries. In 2013, Haiti ranked #8 in the Failed States Index
- "BBC NEWS Haitian senators vote to fire PM". news.bbc.co.uk. April 12, 2008. Retrieved 2008-07-10.
- "BBC NEWS Haiti MPs reject new PM candidate". news.bbc.co.uk. May 13, 2008. Retrieved 2008-07-10.
- "2006 Corruption Perceptions Index reinforces link between poverty and corruption". Transparency International. 2006-11-06. Retrieved 2006-11-06.
- Transparency International. "Corruptions Perception Index". 2012. Retrieved 2 December 2013.
- "Hoping for change in Haiti's Cité-Soleil". International Red Cross. Retrieved 2007-08-16.
- Fund for Peace. "Failed States Index 2013". Retrieved 2 December 2013.