Haitian provisional government dismisses Supreme Court justices

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Provisional president Boniface Alexandre decided on Monday to dismisses 5 Haitian Supreme Court justices, saying that the move is in an effort to allow better working relationships between the executive and judicial branches.

The move comes just days after the court ruled that Dumarsais Siméus should be on the ballot for president in the upcoming elections in Haiti. Siméus is a U.S. citizen and is argued by members of the government and others that his candidacy would violate the Haitian constitution which doesn't allow presidents who have not resided in the country for a period of 5 years prior to the election. However the court ruled that Siméus did not renounce his citizenship in Haiti, and that dual-citizenship is not a violation of the constitution. Lawyers for Siméus see this dismissal as related to the ruling.

However the Chief of Cabinet of the Haitian provisional president says that the dismissal of these judges is unrelated to the case involving Siméus and will not have an effect on how that case is handled.

A recent Gallup poll showed that Siméus is one of the most popular candidates in the race.