Haiti's opposition leaders Friday called for nationwide protests to demand President Jovenel Moise's resignation due to the social and political crisis that is shaking the country.
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"Moise is clinging to power when the priority must be to promote economic, social, and political development," opposition Democratic and Popular Sectors Coalition's leader Andre Michel said.
"His term is over. It began when President Michel Martelly's government expired five years ago, in February 2016," he recalled.
However, Moise insists that he must remain in power for another year. He claims his government started in 2017 because of the chaotic electoral process that forced an interim president's appointment from 2016 to 2017.
Holding parliamentary elections to reactivate the Congress, which has been dissolved for a year, is another opposition's demands.
The elections were scheduled for October 2019, but they were postponed because a wave of protests led to the closure of schools, businesses, and government offices for several weeks.
"Political actors must reach an agreement. Otherwise, the country will sink into chaos and civil war that could lead to foreign occupation," former presidential candidate Maxo Joseph warned.
Parliamentary and presidential elections are scheduled for September 2021, while the vote-counting process is supposed to take place in November.
"We need to let democracy work as it should," Haiti's Foreign Affairs Minister Claude Joseph said, rejecting calls for Moise to resign in February.