Electoral Council Approves 23 of 35 Presidential Candidates
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) _ The Provisional Electoral Council announced Monday it has accepted 23 of the 35 registered candidates for the Nov. 29 presidential elections.
Most of the 12 not accepted were former officials in the Duvalier family dictatorships.
A constitutional provision bars all people who had close official ties with the Duvalier regimes from running for public office.
An electoral council statement broadcast by radio stations Monday night said: ″The Provisional Electoral Council has proceded in conformity with the constitution and electoral law. Our decision, approved by all (nine) members of the council, is that the following candidacies have been approved.″ It then listed the 23 without elaboration.
Seven candidates are considered leading contenders. They are Marc Bazin, Louis Dejoie, Sylvio Claude, Gerard Gourgue, Leslie Manigat, Thomas Desulme and Hubert De Roncerey.
Among the candidacies rejected were those of former government ministers and army officers who served under Francois Duvalier, who ruled from 1957 until his death in 1971, and his son Jean-Claude Duvalier. Jean-Claude succeeded his father as president-for-life, but fled to France on Feb. 7, 1986, following violent anti-government demonstrations.
Clovis Desinor, 72, who was finance minister between 1965 and 1970 and had filed for the presidential election, declined to comment Monday night on the council’s action barring him from running.
In October, Desinor said there would be ″civil war″ if he were to be disqualified.
Elections for members of a bicameral National Assembly also are set for Nov. 29, with balloting for mayors and other town officials scheduled for Nov. 15.
The electoral council statement said it soon would announce the acceptable candidates for the legislative and mayoral races, but it did not give a date.
A three-member Provisional Governing Council has ruled Haiti since Jean- Claude Duvalier went into exile.