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Baby Doc Jean Claude Duvalier, the Youngest President of Haiti

Baby Doc Jean Claude Duvalier was the son of Papa Doc Francois Duvalier, the 40th Haitian president who was a famous dictator and had once proclaimed to be the President for life. Jean Claude Duvalier took over the throne after his father's death in 1971 at the age of 19 years. He remains to be the youngest president ever to have reigned over any state or country.

After his rise to power, Baby Doc Jean Claude Duvalier initiated some changes which were drawing Haiti closer to democratic leadership. He released some of the political prisoners who had been jailed, replaced the cabinet members with younger ones and made press quite independent. However, he was no better than his father as he pinned down any opposition and appointment of major government officials were still under his control. His mother, Simone, also offered vital political support to ensure that his son remained in power. To some extent, it worked out well as Baby Doc Jean Claude Duvalier managed to survive on the throne till 1986.

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Bruno Blanchet

Bruno Blanchet is a prominent Haitian who was the Acting President of the Republic of Haiti. He was nick named in French as Bruno Blanchet the Elder which means one thousand seven hundred sixty. He was experienced and important personnel of Jean-Jacques Dessalines government of Haiti.

Emperor Dessalines was assassinated while he was about to make an important reform about former landless slaves of the state. His decision made a lot of senior staff of the government angry and he was killed, as a result, in 1806 by his staffs including Alexandre Petion, Jean-Pierre Boyer, Andre Rigaud, Bruno Blanchet and some others.

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Jean Pierre Boyer's Autocratic Rule

Jean Pierre Boyer, Haiti's 4th President, ruled for 25 years. He was one of several military leaders instrumental in establishing the Republic of Haiti in 1804. A high-born mulatto, he received his education in France, where he entered the French Revolutionary Army, becoming a battalion commander.

Boyer originally fought alongside Toussaint L'Ouverture towards the beginning of the Haitian Revolution, but switched allegiance to Alexander Petion when he learned the French wanted to re-introduce slavery. During Petion's rulership of Haiti, he had the Constitution amended so he could name his successor. Shortly before his death, he appointed Boyer.

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Francois Duvalier - The First Haitian President for Life

On April 14, 1907, Francois Duvalier was born in Port-Au-Prince in Haiti. His father was once a school teacher and later, he became a judge in a municipal court. He went to Haitian National University where he graduated with a degree in Medicine in 1934. He went to advance his studies in Michigan University from 1944 to 1945. In Haiti, he was a man who liked to embrace the Haitian culture and was a leader of Griot Movement in 1930s. After graduating at Michigan, he returned back to Haiti and was appointed as the Minister for Health and Labor under President Dumarsias Estime.

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Leslie Manigat, the 43rd President of Haiti and Renowned Scholar

Leslie Manigat who features in the history of Haiti as the 43rd president is one of the significant icons in the history of Haiti. He was born in 1931 and is a teacher by profession. Though his reign was short-lived lasting from February 1988 to June 1988, he is one of the presidents who have risen to the throne through a democratic election. He overpowered Henri Namphy in 1988 general elections but he was overthrown by the same person in 1988 through a coup d'etat.

Leslie Manigat has been a prominent scholar and has a slew of books and thesis to his name. He is also known with his significant contribution in Haiti's Newspapers through article writing. His teaching career has paved his way to prominent universities around the globe. He has lectured at Yale University, University of Paris, University of West Indies and Johns Hopkins University. Majoring in history, he has made significant impact among many students as he is quite rich in the subject. His involvement in essay writing also made him rank high in Literature which has attracted a Grand Prize in Literature at Book Fair Miami.

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How Haiti can make good use of all these former Presidents

By May 14, 2011 Haiti will have a record number of former presidents in the country. It will be the first time that happen in the history of Haiti.

Former Haitian President Boniface Alexandre is in Haiti, living a quit life. We recently have two controversial former leaders who made celebrity comeback to Haiti in 2011: Jean-Claude Duvalier and Jean-Bertraned Aristide. By the end of his term on May 14, president Rene Preval will join the list of former Haitian presidents as well.

How can Haiti make good use of all these former leaders?

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