By Victor Omondi – (Original News Source: www.yourblackworld.net) – Haitian President Jovenel Moïse was assassinated and his wife injured on Wednesday at their home by a group of unidentified gunmen, interim Prime Minister Claude Joseph announced. Joseph said the security situation in the country was “under the control” of Haiti’s police and military.
Haiti has suffered from years-long political instability, and Moïse had been governing by decree. Critics had accused the 53-year-old of ruling like an autocrat.
Mr. Moïse had led Haiti, one of the poorest nations in the world, since 2017 but had faced widespread protests demanding his resignation. The nation’s recent history has been plagued by coups, political instability, and widespread gang violence.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted that he was “saddened at the death of Mr. Moïse,” calling it “an abhorrent act” and appealing for calm.
Former president Michel Martelly handpicked Mr. Moïse in 2015 as the candidate to succeed him. In February 2016, with Martelly’s five-year term nearing its end and his political succession in limbo, Haiti’s parliament elected Jocelerme Privert, president of the Senate at the time, to be the interim president.
A dispute over when the president’s term was to end stemmed from Moise’s original election: He was voted into office in a poll subsequently canceled on the grounds of fraud and then elected again a year later, in 2016.
After the latter disputed election, demonstrations demanding his resignation intensified in the summer of 2018. Voting to elect deputies, senators, mayors, and local officials should have been held in 2018, but the polls have been delayed, triggering the vacuum in which Moïse said he was entitled to stay for another year.
Haiti’s Embassy in Washington D.C. released a statement on behalf of the government later Wednesday morning, saying Moïse had been killed in a “well-coordinated attack by a highly trained and heavily armed group.”