We learned that former US Envoy Alvin P. Adams Jr. died on October 10, 2015. Many Haitians would remember him for his active role during the government of Jean Bertrand Aristide and his negotiation in the 1990s with General Prosper Avril.
Mr. Adams who was the US envoy to Haiti from 1989-1992, was appointed under Presidents George Bush. He was the one who persuaded Lt. Gen. Prosper Avril to leave power in march 1990 and also managed to get him out of the country via a United States Air Force jet.
This move actually paved the way for the ascension of Jean-Bertrand Aristide to power. Also in the the same year, a military coup overthrew Aristide from power. Alvin Philip Adams Jr. also played a key role in negotiating his exile to Venezuela. Jean Bertrand returned to power in 1994.
As it was the case with Prosper Avril, former president Jean Claude Duvalier was invited to celebrate the 2010th anniversary of our independence in the historic and revolutionary city of Gonaives. In term of revolution, the former Haitian dictator would be the first to tell you based on his experience with this Haitian city. His exile to France was the result of an ongoing protest that originated in Gonaives in 1986, with the assassination of three High School students.
Since his return from exile, it seems that former President Jean Claude Duvalier has taken it upon himself to built bridges between the city of Gonaives and himself. Beside this 2010th anniversary of our independence in which he was invited to participate in, Mr. Duvalier was invited in Gonaives to sponsor a promotion of Jurists at the Faculty of Law of Gonaives which had raised a great outcry. Many people feel at the time it was inappropriate as the former dictator did not have any respect for the law or justice during his reign.
The 210th Anniversary Of Haiti Independence was celebrated in Gonaives with many dignitaries present in Gonaives for the occasion. In a sign of unity, president Michel Martelly had invited several former Haitian presidents to join him in Gonaives for the occasion. Unfortunately, only two showed up: Jean Claude Duvalier and Prosper Avril.
Why is that?
Annou fouye pi fon!
President Martelly invite tout ansyen President yo, poukisa nou panse gin nan yo ki pa vini?
Prosper Avril rose to power through his close association with the most powerful family in Haiti.
In 1969 he joined the Presidential Guard. In 1971 he became the personal body guard and close confidante of Jean Claude Duvalier. Prosper Avril was born on December 12th, 1937.
Favorite of the Duvaliers
Avril was in charge of the overseas management. It is said that he was the only other person who had signature authority other than the Duvaliers. This authority was given to handle their foreign accounts. He was called the "bagman" by the Duvaliers.
Born on November 2nd 1932 at Cap- Haitien, Henri Namphy was another military leader who became the president of Haiti. In the army he rose to the post of a general. His first stint in the political area was as the President of Haiti during a period where the interim body ruled.
The interim body was the National Council of Government and they ruled from February 1986 to February 1988. This interim council consisted of six civilians and six military personnel. This interim body assured elections and reforms that would be people friendly.
Herard Abraham was born on July 28th 1940 in Port-au-Prince. At a very young age he enlisted himself into the Haitian army. He rose in the ranks of the army and also had a short stint in politics. So he can be called an army man and a political figure.
Hérard Abraham rose to the position of Lieutenant General of the Haitian Force Arme D'Haiti and became a close member of the inner circle of the Duvalier family.
In spite of being close to the Duvalier Family, Herard Abraham joined hands with the new president Henri Namphy. He served as the foreign minister in the new government, his first political post.
The Haitian government is led by a president, who shares his/her executive power with the prime minister. Once elected by popular vote, the president will run the country for five years. After the term, the president could not run in the next election. He/she has to wait for five years in order to seek a second term. Haiti presidents can only serve for a maximum of two terms.
Not everyone can run for president as there are certain qualifications and requirements to be eligible for the seat. Only candidates with Haitian citizenship by birth can run for the position, as well as those who are at least 35 years of age. Jail sentence, loss of civil rights and lack of property ownership and residency can make a candidate ineligible to assume the position.
Duvalierist - Henri Namphy - 1986 - 1988 - Manigat - Coup D'Detat - Prosper Avril - General -
The 42nd and 44th president of Haiti, Henri Namphy, who reigned over Haiti for the period between 1986 to 1988 and June 1988 to September 1988, is one of the remarkable figures in Haiti's presidency. During his first reign, he got himself on the throne through National Council of Government that kicked Duvalier out power.
Henri Namphy was not at peace immediately after taking over from Duvalier who had declared himself as the president for life. Strikes and riots were the order of the day and he reacted harshly through sucking top government officials who were diehard royals of his predecessor. His reign was unanimously referred to as the "Duvalierism rule without Duvalier" as he was no better than his predecessor. After a while, however, he was able to put everything under control and secured a two year reign to the beginning of 1988.
Despite the changing gender roles and the growing feminist movement, female presidents or heads of state are quite rare in Haiti. One of these very few powerful women in history is former Haitian president Ertha Pascal-Trouillot. Politics has always been said to be meant for males as power and control are often associated with being a man. But as time went by, women began competing with this notion and have been made leaders and politicians along with men.
Pascal-Trouillot was born in a suburb of Haiti's capital Port-au-Prince in 1943. Her father was an iron worker while her mother was a seamstress and was the ninth child of their ten children. The future president acquired a law degree from the prestigious École de Droit des Gonaives and was a judge for federal courts for more than ten years. She then became the first woman justice of the country's Supreme Court. And in 1990, Pascal-Trouillot was proclaimed as Haiti's temporary president after the successful revolt against former president Prosper Avril which put him out of office.
The overthrowing of Jean-Claude Duvalier in 1986 paved way to the gradual transition of Haitian politics to democracy and Henri Namphy was supposed to lead that transition. But before democracy reached the country, there was chaos everywhere as theft, riots, and coup d'états were rampant as the government after the Duvalier regime was unstable.
After Duvalier and his family left for France, the country was led by the National Council of Government (CNG) under Haitian general Henri Namphy. The council was made up of four individuals from the military and two civilians which tried to push for several democratic reforms and promised Haitians the occurrence of elections. Two years later, the general was then made president after successfully overthrowing Leslie Manigat who was the winner in the 1988 elections via a coup d'état.
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