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Wyclef Jean Running For President Of Haiti

August 5th, 2010 10:19pm EDT

Wyclef JeanHip-hop star Wyclef Jean is running for president of his native Haiti after officially filing election papers confirming his candidacy on Thursday.

The Fugees rapper ended weeks of speculation when he jetted into the country on Thursday morning and headed straight to the electoral council office in the capital Port-Au-Prince to lodge the documents, according to the AFP.

Jean, who had earlier stepped down as head of his Yele Haiti charity, was accompanied by his wife Marie Claudinette and their adopted daughter, Angelina.

The star revealed his race for presidency was driven by "the people of Haiti", who are still dealing with the aftermath of January's devastating earthquake - and he's hoping to tackle issues including education and infrastructure if he's elected.

But Jean admits the rebuilding of the impoverished Caribbean nation "is going to take 25 to 30 years."

He tells the Wall Street Journal, "I always say that Wyclef Jean is not running for the presidency of Haiti, I'm being drafted by the people of Haiti.

"My whole life since I was a kid, the country has had political turmoil. The reason why is that there's never been one person who can unite all parties and get them to work together.

"I think there are issues we can start tackling - the education, the literacy problem, the job creation problem, the agricultural component. The idea that if everything is being imported how do we get our export back.

"These are some of the things that I feel we can start tackling. And when I say job creation, the infrastructure, the reconstruction of Haiti, should not only (involve) international contractors, but there should be local Haitian contractors too."

Jean is expected to join revered newsman Larry King on his CNN show tonight to give his first official interview as a candidate in the Haitian presidential elections.

Wyclef Jean

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Photo Credits: Daniel Locke / PR Photos


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