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Jovenel Moïse

Businessman and former president of the Republic of Haiti

Jovenel Moïse
Moïse in 2019
President of Haiti
In office
7 February 2017 – 7 July 2021
Prime Minister
Preceded byJocelerme Privert (interim)
Succeeded byClaude Joseph (acting)
Personal details
Born(1968-06-26)26 June 1968
Trou-du-Nord, Haiti
Died7 July 2021(2021-07-07) (aged 53)
Pèlerin 5, Pétion-Ville, Haiti
Cause of deathAssassination (gunshot wounds)
Political partyTèt Kale[1]
Spouse(s)
(m. 1996)
Children3

Jovenel Moïse (French pronunciation: ​[ʒɔv(ə)nɛl mɔiz]; Haitian Creole pronunciation: [ʒovɛnɛl mɔiz]; 26 June 1968 – 7 July 2021) was a Haitian entrepreneur and politician who served as the president of Haiti from 2017 until his assassination in 2021.

He was sworn in as president in February 2017 after winning the November 2016 election.[2][3] In 2019, political unrest and calls for his resignation became a crisis.[4][5] In the early morning of 7 July 2021, Moïse was assassinated and his wife Martine was injured during an attack on their private residence in Pétion-Ville.[6][7] Claude Joseph, the interim prime minister, took control of the country following Moïse's assassination.[8]

Early life and education

Jovenel Moïse was born in Trou du Nord, Nord-Est, Haiti, on 26 June 1968. In July 1974, his family moved to Port-au-Prince, where he continued his primary studies at École Nationale Don Durélin, and followed up with his secondary studies first at Lycée Toussaint Louverture, and then at Centre Culturel du Collège Canado-Haïtien.[9] In 1996, he married his classmate Martine Marie Étienne Joseph.[9] That same year, they left the capital and established themselves in Port-de-Paix to develop rural areas.[9]

Business career

With little investment capital, Moïse launched his first business in Port-de-Paix, Jomar Auto Parts, which is still in operation today. That same year, he began development of an agricultural project of organic banana production from a plantation extending to over 10 hectares (25 acres) of land in the Nord-Ouest department.[10] In 2001, Moïse partnered with Culligan Water to start a drinking water plant for distribution to the Nord-Ouest and Nord-Est departments. In 2012, he founded Agritrans SA, introduced the agricultural project Nourribio to Trou du Nord, and helped create Haiti's first agricultural free trade zone, a 1,000-hectare (2,500-acre) banana plantation in Nord-Est.[11] This project was supposed to export bananas to Germany, for the first time since 1954; however, only two containers were ever sent. This nonetheless led him to be nicknamed Nèg Bannann (Banana Man).[12] The government granted tax-free access to the land, 15 years' exemption from income tax and from customs duties on the purchase of capital equipment,[13] and a $6 million loan to a new company, Agritrans, owned by Moïse, the president of the local chamber of commerce. Anonymous investors contributed at least another $10 million. Agritrans promised to create about 3,000 jobs;[14] however, as of March 2015, it had employed only 600.[15]

Political career

Moïse with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in 2018
Moïse and other Caribbean leaders with U.S. President Donald Trump in Florida in 2019
US Ambassador to the UN Kelly Craft and President Moïse in 2019
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and President Moïse in 2020

In 2015, President Michel Martelly designated Moïse as the presidential candidate of the political party Martelly had founded, the center-right Haitian Tèt Kale Party (PHTK).[16] In his campaign, Moïse promoted bio-ecological agriculture as an economic engine for Haiti, whose population is over 50% rural.[17] He also expressed support for policies pursued by Martelly: universal education and health care, energy reform, rule of law, the creation of sustainable jobs, environmental protection, and the development of Haiti as a destination for ecotourism and agritourism. Moïse received 32.8% of votes in the first round of the elections held on 15 October 2015, with 54 candidates competing, qualifying for a runoff with the second-place finisher, Jude Célestin.[18][19] However, an exit poll conducted by the Haiti Sentinel reflected Moïse receiving only 6% of the vote, and Célestin and many observers called the results fraudulent.[20][21] Thousands of people took to the streets in violent protests, forcing the postponement of the runoff election.[22] In their wake, the ballot was ultimately annulled in June 2016.[18][23] In February 2016, after incumbent President Michel Martelly stepped down at the end of his term, special elections were held by parliament and Jocelerme Privert was then installed as interim President, until new elections could be held.[24]

On 20 November 2016, a new election was held; a week later, election officials declared, based on preliminary results, that Moïse had won the election with 55.67 percent of the vote[23] and with an estimated voter turnout of 21%, beating out 26 other candidates — four of whom claimed victory, before the official results were announced.[25][26] Moïse thus secured the presidency without having to compete in a second-round election. In second, third, and fourth place were mechanical engineer Jude Celestin of LAPEH with 19.52 percent, leftist senator Jean-Charles Moïse of the Platfom Pitit Dessalines (PPD) with 11.04 percent, and Maryse Narcisse of Fanmi Lavalas (FL) with 8.99 percent.[27] Jovenel Moïse was sworn in on 7 February 2017 for a five-year term.[28]

Moïse faced challenges to his mandate, from opposition leaders who believed that Moïse's five-year mandate should end from the date of the inconclusive 2015 elections — that is, on 7 February 2021, five years to the day since his predecessor in office stepped down, though Moïse, counting from the date of his swearing in, had claimed that his term would not end till 2022.[29]

In November 2019, Moïse met at the Haiti National Palace with U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Kelly Craft, about ways to implement a consensual resolution of Haiti's political crisis through inclusive dialogue.[30][31] Craft later met with several political leaders from other parties, listened to their different views, and urged an inclusive solution with Moïse.[31][32] She also urged the Haitian government to fight corruption, investigate and prosecute human rights abusers, and combat narcotics and human trafficking.[31]

Electoral history

Presidential elections were held in Haiti on 25 October 2015, alongside local elections and the second round of the legislative elections.[33]

2015 presidential election

2015 Haitian presidential election[34]
Party Candidate Votes %
PHTK Jovenel Moïse 508,761 32.81
LAPEH Jude Célestin 392,782 25.27
Platfòm Pitit Desalin Jean-Charles Moïse 222,109 14.27
Fanmi Lavalas Maryse Narcisse 108,844 7.05
Mouvement Action Socialiste Eric Jean Baptiste 56,427 3.63
Other parties Other candidates 242,047 15.58
Against all Against all 22,161 1.42

As no candidate received more than 50% of the vote, a second round was mandated by law. However, this was repeatedly postponed, and eventually cancelled,[35] with an interim president appointed indirectly by the legislature in the February 2016 Haitian presidential election and fresh elections scheduled for 2016.[36]

November 2016 presidential election

November 2016 Haitian presidential election[37]
Party Candidate Votes %
PHTK Jovenel Moïse 590,927 55.60
LAPEH Jude Célestin 207,988 19.57
Platfòm Pitit Desalin Jean-Charles Moïse 117,349 11.04
Fanmi Lavalas Maryse Narcisse 95,765 9.01
Renmen Ayiti Jean-Henry Céant 8,014 0.75
Other parties Other candidates 35,593 3.18
Against all Against all 7,203 0.68

With more than 50% of votes cast, Moïse was elected in the first round.[35]

Assassination

On 7 July 2021, Moïse was assassinated when unidentified gunmen attacked his residence in Pèlerin 5, a district of Pétion-Ville.[38][39][40][41] Martine Moïse, the first lady of Haiti, was hospitalized for wounds sustained during the attack.[42][43][44] A press release issued later that day from the office of acting Prime Minister Claude Joseph blamed the attack on "a group of unidentified individuals, some of whom spoke in Spanish".[45]

Honors

Moïse was awarded the Order of Brilliant Jade with Grand Cordon by the president of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen, in May 2018.[46][47] Tsai commended the economic initiatives undertaken by Moïse's government.[48]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Our Campaigns – Political Party – Haitian Tèt Kale (PHTK)". www.ourcampaigns.com. Archived from the original on 7 July 2021. Retrieved 28 May 2021.
  2. ^ @cep_haiti (28 November 2016). "Résultats préliminaires des élections présidentielles du 20 Novembre 2016 pic.twitter.com/i9GsrkkU8p" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  3. ^ Brice, Makini (29 November 2016). "Businessman Moise wins Haiti election in first round – provisional results". Port-au-Prince: Reuters. Archived from the original on 7 August 2020. Retrieved 16 November 2017.
  4. ^ Padgett, Tim. "Moïse Mess: Haiti's Political Standoff – And Humanitarian Crisis – Won't Likely End Soon". www.wlrn.org. Archived from the original on 8 October 2019. Retrieved 15 December 2019.
  5. ^ "Miami Herald". Archived from the original on 6 October 2019. Retrieved 8 October 2019.
  6. ^ EUGENE, Ody BIEN. "Le président Jovenel Moïse blessé mortellement lors d'une attaque armée, confirme le PM Claude Joseph – Juno7". www.juno7.ht (in French). Archived from the original on 7 July 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  7. ^ Ma, Alexandra. "The president of Haiti has been killed". Business Insider. Archived from the original on 7 July 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  8. ^ "The assassination of Haiti's president: What happened, and what could be next". Global News. Retrieved 9 July 2021.
  9. ^ a b c Boursiquot, Sherley (7 February 2017). "Who Is Jovenel Moïse? Meet Haiti's New President After 2016 Election". International Business Times. Archived from the original on 7 February 2017. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  10. ^ "Moise: 'Banana Man' to president". Trinidad and Tobago Newsday. 8 July 2021. Retrieved 9 July 2021.
  11. ^ Haiti Libre Staff (25 October 2015). "Haïti - Portrait: Qui est Jovenel Moïse ?". Haiti Libre (in French). Archived from the original on 30 November 2016. Retrieved 30 November 2016.
  12. ^ Johnston, Jake (27 July 2018). "Amid an Uprising, Can Haitian President Jovenel Moïse Deliver on His Promises?". The Nation. Archived from the original on 22 March 2019. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  13. ^ Haiti - Agriculture : Creation of the first Haitian Agricultural Free Zone, 10 August 2013, Haiti Libre. Accessed 9 July 2021.
  14. ^ "Haiti - Agriculture : $27M for the production of bananas for export - HaitiLibre.com : Haiti news 7/7". www.haitilibre.com. Archived from the original on 25 January 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  15. ^ "Haiti's Fraudulent Presidential Frontrunner Seizes Land for His Own Banana Republic". NACLA. Archived from the original on 30 October 2017. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
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  21. ^ Charles, Jacqueline (29 October 2015). "Haitian observers: 'Massive fraud' in vote". Miami Herald. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 7 February 2016.
  22. ^ Robles, Frances (22 January 2016). "Haiti Postpones Presidential Runoff as Violence Rises". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on 26 January 2016. Retrieved 7 February 2016.
  23. ^ a b "Haiti presidential election 'won by Jovenel Moise'". BBC. 29 November 2016. Archived from the original on 18 June 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
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  26. ^ Jacqueline Charles (28 November 2016). "Banana farmer wins Haiti presidency, according to preliminary results". Miami Herald. Archived from the original on 29 November 2016. Retrieved 29 November 2016.
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  32. ^ "Kelly Craft a rencontré Jovenel Moise, sa présence en Haïti est d'aider à résoudre la crise, dit-elle | Actualités Politiques". Haïti News 2000. 20 November 2019. Archived from the original on 8 July 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  33. ^ Haiti sets date for long overdue elections Archived 2 June 2021 at the Wayback Machine BBC News, 13 March 2015
  34. ^ "Resultat definitif le tour president" (PDF). CEP Haiti. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 March 2016.
  35. ^ a b Robles, Frances (30 November 2016). "President-Elect Jovenel Moïse of Haiti Vows to Create Plan to Channel Aid". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on 8 November 2020. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  36. ^ Delva, Joseph Guyler (7 June 2016). "Haiti scraps election; interim president says could stay for months". Reuters. Archived from the original on 20 November 2019. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  37. ^ "Haiti - Presidential 2016 : Final Results, Jovenel Moïse 58th President - HaitiLibre.com : Haiti news 7/7". www.haitilibre.com. Archived from the original on 17 October 2019. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  38. ^ "Le président Jovenel Moïse assassiné chez lui par un commando armé". Le Nouvelliste. Archived from the original on 7 July 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  39. ^ "Haïti : le président Jovenel Moïse assassiné par un commando". Libération. Archived from the original on 7 July 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  40. ^ Armed Intruders Kill Haitian President Jovenel Moïse. MSNBC. 7 July 2021.
  41. ^ Haiti President Jovenel Moïse assassinated. Associated Press. 7 July 2021.
  42. ^ "Haïti : le président Jovenel Moïse assassiné". France 24. 7 July 2021. Archived from the original on 7 July 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  43. ^ "Haitian President Jovenel Moise assassinated overnight at private residence". France24. 7 July 2021. Archived from the original on 7 July 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  44. ^ Deutsche Welle (7 July 2021). "Haitian President Jovenel Moise assassinated in his home". Archived from the original on 7 July 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  45. ^ "Haiti - FLASH : President Jovenel Moïse Assassinated by mercenaries (official) Updated 7am + video - HaitiLibre.com : Haiti news 7/7". Haiti Libre.com. 7 July 2021. Archived from the original on 7 July 2021. Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  46. ^ DeAeth, Duncan (28 May 2018). "As President of Haiti arrives in Taipei, a crucial test begins for Tsai administration". Taiwan News. Archived from the original on 3 August 2020. Retrieved 23 April 2020.
  47. ^ Chinese (Taiwan) Yearbook of International Law and Affairs. 36. Brill. 9 December 2019. p. 242. ISBN 9789004414181. Archived from the original on 4 August 2020. Retrieved 23 April 2020.
  48. ^ "President Tsai hosts state banquet for Haitian President Jovenel Moïse". Office of the President, Taiwan. 29 May 2018. Archived from the original on 2 August 2020. Retrieved 23 April 2020.
Political offices
Preceded by
Jocelerme Privert
Interim
President of Haiti
2017–2021
Succeeded by
Claude Joseph
Acting