A commission recently appointed by Haitian President Michel Martelly is calling for his prime minister to resign so a new consensus government can be formed, according to a report obtained Tuesday by The Associated Press.
The 11-member panel made up of former officials and religious leaders was appointed by Martelly on November 28 to help resolve a political stalemate holding up long-delayed legislative and municipal elections. In recent days, there has been an uptick in street protests by government critics demanding a chance to vote and calling for a new political administration. After eight days of consultations, the commission delivered a report recommending that Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe step down in the next week in order to pave the way for a consensus government to be created.
It also calls for resignations before Christmas by the president of the Supreme Court and the current members of Haiti’s Provisional Electoral Council, an institution that has long been criticized for alleged bias and votes plagued by fraud allegations. Among other “appeasement measures,” the commission says several “political prisoners” allegedly arbitrarily arrested and not yet taken before a judge should be immediately released. A “truce” should also be adopted by political opponents to allow dialogue to take place with the government, it said.
At a news conference, Martelly said he will make decisions about the commission’s recommendations over the next 48 hours and then address the nation.