Haiti: President’s Commission Recommends to not Publish the Constitution

Wednesday, 07 March 2012
Georges Michel

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (defend.ht) – A presidential commission that included GĂ©rard Gourgue and Georges Michel recommended to the Head of State not to publish a corrected version of the Constitution of Haiti amended by the Parliament in 2010.

A commission member, George Michel, who in 1987 participated in framing the previous Constitution, said that the members of the commission, for two months, analyzed different aspects of the record and reached the conclusion that the document submitted to the former President Rene Preval to be published in the executive journal Le Moniteur differed from what was voted in the National Assembly on May 8th and 9th.

In an interview with Radio Metropole, Michel assured that it is a fake and not a legislative document containing errors.

The presidential commission used the recorded video of the sessions as the actual minutes from the meeting in the National Assembly could not be found.

To George Michel, there is no possibility to reconstruct the document passed by the National Assembly.

The president’s commission described more than 17 discrepancies between the report and the final document submitted to President Martelly, said Michel arguing that the alterations entail the lapse of the document.

Asked about the ability of some elected officials to correct certain texts, Georges Michel said that the senators and deputies no longer have the powers of the constituent assembly.

George Michael says that the amendment of the French version of the constitution is only half the task to achieve. In 1987 a Creole version was published along with the French and to Michel, the publication of the amended version will result in a crisis since there would be two versions of the conflicting legal constitution, he insists.

“President Martelly must defend the principles, the constitution and the rule of law in refusing to publish the amendment,” insists George Michel.

Mixed Commission

A mixed commission, consisting of elected lawmakers, members of the executive and civil society worked for several months to confirm a Constitution that was in accordance to what was voted in Parliament.

Three weeks into the term of President Michel Martelly, by a presidential decree, the Constitution was left in limbo between amended and non-amended.

The President of the National Assembly holds firmly that the Constitution with its amendments should be published and that a president can not repeal the act of elected representatives of the legislature.


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