A Final Case for the President; Rene Preval
- Friday, May 13, 2011 8:36 AM
The living generation of Haitians has never known a stable government. The idea of a peaceful succession of power is foreign to most.
More than 50 years ago, FranÃ§ois 'Papa Doc' Duvalier wasn't preceded by another president but by a military tribunal that took the nation with force. His son, Jean-Claude 'Baby Doc' Duvalier, succeeded through his father's death.
There was Jean-Bertrand Aristide who was exiled, imprisoned and given to a coup multiple times. And before all these men things were just as, if not more, complicated.
So for the 86 year-old and grayed, Rene Gracia Preval, in his last 24 hours as Head of the State, he is due of some regard. 'History' which always looks back with the knowledge of the present - the future, which is not known - will look back at his legacy as president with kindness.
Stability is Priceless
The only other democratically elected president of this generation, who wasn't a brutal dictator has been the Former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.
It was an ill administration, twice, that was wrought with political assassinations, coups, exiles and real invasions of foreign forces; the U.S. Marines, 1993 and the UN Stabilization Mission, MINUSTAH, 2004.
So when compared to other Haitian presidents, the only appropriate comparison that should be made, Preval is well above the past dozen or so.
Rene Preval had to deal with more problems than his former colleague Aristide too.
There were food riots, political unrest, not to mention, a month, in a year in which 4 hurricanes hit Haiti. Then, there was the earthquake of January 12, 2010, an apocalyptic event.
One can criticize the lack of response to these natural and unnatural events but one should also commend him for not over-responding.
It is in conditions like these, dictatorships are born, martial law is enacted and more lives are lost through violence and upheaval and sovereignty, severely compromised. This is the case of many other underdeveloped nations. But Preval kept the ship afloat.
The Real Reconciliation
The prelude to what the incoming President will benefit from which is having reconciled outstanding matters, began long before he arrived on the scene.
The legislation to provide citizenship to all Haitians, all around the world was enacted on September 2009. The establishment of National Day of the Diaspora, was under Rene Preval.
The return of two exiled Presidents, the aforementioned Jean-Claude Duvalier and Jean Bertrand Aristide, was in his administration.
The right to free education, women rights and entering Haiti into the Global Data Dissemination System, were brave steps in the right direction for the country. Let those things not be forgetten.
Another thing that has been well forgotten is that Haiti was on its way to real economic growth just before the earthquake. There were multiple investments, international and local, that were taking place but were overshadowed by the devastation that occurred.
A Peaceful Succession
Beyond the complications of holding a credible election, there will be a succession of powers on May 14, 2011. The nation, the young, worldwide nation of Haiti, will experience the true demonstration of democracy on this day.
The act of inaugurating a new president can not be taken lightly. It is the material function that allows a nation to change, develop, and control its future.
It is with all these things being considered, that history will find a favorable chair for Rene Preval. This chapter has been written, the soon-to-be Former President of Haiti, Rene Preval, is given a pleasant farewell.
We post, you decide.