Hip hop hopeful meets Haiti's president

Haiti’s president met Wyclef Jean for more than two hours, sparking a new round of speculation on whether the singer would be included in a list of presidential candidates.

Haiti’s president met Wyclef Jean for more than two hours, sparking a new round of speculation on whether the singer would be included in a list of presidential candidates.

Jean said that he felt yesterday’s exchange with Rene Preval was positive.

“I feel good,” the hip hop artist and former Fugees frontman said. “I feel that the president that I voted for five years ago is the same person that was sitting in front of me today.”

Earlier this week, Jean went into hiding after he said he had received death threats. He said Mr Preval expressed concern and offered him security.

The singer – and several dozen other presidential candidates – are expected to find out today if the country’s electoral council allows them to run for office.

The council, known as the CEP, was supposed to release the presidential candidate list on Tuesday, but postponed the decision.

For several days, Haitians, bloggers and international media have speculated whether Jean will be on the list. Under Haitian law, candidates for president must live in the country for five years before taking office.

Jean – who was born in Haiti but moved to New York when he was nine – says he meets the requirements and has hired lawyers to defend his case.

After meeting Mr Preval, Jean was confident that he would be allowed to campaign.

“It looks like it’s leaning that way,” he said.

A spokesman for the CEP, Richardson Dumel, said last night that “the list is not yet final” and he could not disclose who had succeeded.

Jean added that Mr Preval told him that he wanted to “meet with every possible presidential candidate” and called for a peaceful campaign leading up to the November 28 election.

Despite being raised in New York, Jean never became an American citizen.

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