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Wyclef Jean is no longer running for President of his native country Haiti

“This was not an easy conclusion to reach; but it is one that was thoughtfully made, taking into account many, many competing factors and weighing the course that will best advance the healing of the country and help it find the quickest path to recovery,” the Haitian-born musician said in a statement Tuesday.

Jean had announced his intent to run for President of the impoverished, earthquake-ravage island nation in early August, but Haiti’s Provincial Electoral Council disqualified the singer because Haitian law demands that candidates reside in the country for at least five years, and Jean has lived in New Jersey with his wife and daughter during that time.

Wyclef briefly appealed this decision before officially withdrawing. He’ll instead return full-time to music.

“Some battles are best fought off the field, and that is where we take this now,” Jean said, adding that he doesn’t regret his attempts to appeal the Council’s decision.

“It’s not about my candidacy — this appeal was meant to address the shortcomings of the process for every Haitian. Though my run for the presidency was cut short, in this way, I feel it was not in vain; it’s something we can use to improve conditions for my Haitian brothers and sisters.”

Jean’s new album If I Were President, the Haitian Experience will be released in February 2011, with a summertime tour.


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