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In Haiti, only 1 presidential candidate campaigning | The Philippines Star


Campaigning for Haiti’s presidential runoff election kicked off Friday, though it appears there is only one candidate who will actively participate.Government-backed contender Jovenel Moise, a little-known agricultural entrepreneur who led a crowded field of 54 candidates with nearly 33 percent of the vote in the Oct. 25 first round, attracted roughly 1,500 people to his first rally Friday evening. Big speakers pumped out bass-heavy songs featuring his campaign moniker, “Neg Bannann” — Banana Man in Haitian Creole — and a group of women wore yellow banana costumes.But the campaign team of the second-place finisher, Jude Celestin, was quiet a day after saying he would take part in the Jan. 24 runoff only if sweeping changes recently recommended by a special commission were adopted first to improve Haiti’s much-criticized electoral machinery.Celestin, a former state construction chief, told The Miami Herald on Thursday that outgoing President Michel Martelly “will have to do an election with just one candidate.” His phone consistently goes unanswered and his campaign leaders did not respond to calls Friday.While the Provisional Electoral Council has pledged to improve transparency for the final round, special commission spokesman Rosny Desroches has said he has seen very little progress to improve the process and ease tensions since the panel’s recommendations were released last weekend.Unless Celestin officially withdraws from the race his name will appear on the runoff ballot whether he chooses to campaign or not, Provisional Electoral Council spokesman Roudy Stanley Penn said Friday.

Source: | philstar.comJovenel Moise, Jude Celestin

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