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April 5, 2011 12:53 pm

Haitian Election Concludes: Michel Martelly Victor

avatar by Maxine Dovere

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Michel Martelly poster. Photo: Marcello Casal Jr.

Following an election whose results took months to tally, Michel Martelly was elected President of Haiti by a margin of 2:1.  He received 67 percent of the votes cast:  his opponent,  Mirlande Manigat, had  32 percent.
Official results will be announced April 16.

Still recovering from the devastating earthquake of two years ago, Haitians did not go quietly to the voting booth.   Charges of fraud, continued anger, homelessness and a painfully slow recovery hampered the election.  Martelly characterized himself as “the candidate of change,” combining his celebrity popularity and “grassroots rhetoric” with a politically sophisticated campaign that used western techniques including identifying bracelets, social media, and support from the Haitian diaspora community.

Manigat, a 70-year-old professor who does not speak Creole, the language of much of the population, was considered an aloof intellectual.  The election was monitored by an international team.

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