Published On: Mon, Dec 15th, 2014

Haitian PM resigns

martelly_lamothePORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti - Haitian prime minister, Laurent Lamothe, announced early on Sunday that he was resigning, along with several other ministers, following the recommendation of a presidential commission report.

In a speech, Lamothe said he was leaving “with a sense of accomplishment”, adding, “This country has undergone a deep and dynamic transformation and a real change in benefit of its people.”

Haiti's President Michel Martelly had announced on Friday that he agreed with the conclusions of the commission's report, which called, among other things, for Lamothe’s resignation of as part of a proposed solution to the Caribbean country's current political crisis.

During an address to the nation, Martelly said he accepted the commission's recommendations.

"The commission calls for the resignation of the prime minister. The commission's report says that the prime minister told them [members of the commission] that he is ready to resign if the president would ask him to do so," Martelly said.

"So, the prime minister is ready to do such a sacrifice. The prime minister is not a young man who was looking for a job. He is a young man who knows how to work and that is why I chose him," explained Martelly, hoping that Lamothe's work will be recognized.

"I salute the stand that he has taken to ease the political situation. I congratulate him for his courage and determination to help Haiti," said Martelly.

The Haitian leader also congratulated the members of the commission for their contribution to efforts aimed at solving a political impasse caused by long-delayed legislative and local elections, the intransigence of opposition senators who have been blocking the adoption of an electoral law to facilitate the organization of the balloting and the extremism of a number of political parties and other groups.

The Commission called for the resignation of Lamothe, of a nine-member electoral council, of the president of the High Council of the Judiciary (CSPJ) and called on relevant authorities to free "political prisoners" and on opposition groups to cease a series of street demonstrations and other kinds of unrests.

"I agree to the recommendations presented. I agree to the report, which has created hope for unity in Haiti," stated Martelly. "And I am going to start working toward implementing it rapidly," he assured.

However, the Haitian leader acknowledged the challenge of meeting a series of deadlines proposed by the commission for the implementation of a number of steps, given that the decisions that need to be taken do not depend only on the president.

"On Monday, I will start meeting with all the actors who have to play a role in the implementation of the recommendations," Martelly announced.

As far as the release of the so-called political prisoners is concerned, Martelly denied that anyone in Haiti had been arrested or detained for political reasons.

"I do not recognize, as president, that there is one person in the country who has been detained for political reasons," the Haitian leader explained.

"I already asked the justice minister to make sure that the rights of all those in prison be protected and to ask the CSPJ to ask all judges to accelerate proceedings regarding any victimized prisoners so that justice may be done," Martelly stated.

By Joseph Guyler Delva

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