Haiti’s senate leader urges prime minister Laurent Lamothe to resign

Haiti’s senate leader has called on Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe to resign after losing a no-confidence vote in the Senate chamber. The vote, which was one of a number of events that unfolded on Wednesday, seeks to remove Lamothe.

Yves Olivier added that a request had been submitted to the caretaker president, Jovenel Moïse, for the emergency prime minister to be appointed. Lamothe would then appoint an interim cabinet, Olivier said.

Senate holds ‘no confidence’ vote on Haitian prime minister, who insists he will stay in post Read more

It was the second time in a little over a year that Lamothe faced a vote of no confidence in the Senate chamber, a rare occurrence in Haiti that critics have dubbed “Kafka”.

“I will not resign,” Lamothe told the media after the vote. “I will be determined, resolute and will leave no option off the table.”

Earlier in the day, reports emerged that IMF representatives were in Port-au-Prince working on a bailout agreement for the struggling country. The US government has said that the IMF monitoring team had been visiting Haiti since 14 September. The IMF said the monitoring team was expected to complete their visits on Friday, when the IMF board will discuss the team’s progress and report back with the next steps.

In addition to the no-confidence vote, Haitians were protesting in the city of Jacmel against what they see as the erosion of political and economic stability, and an inability to resolve internal security problems.

The protests were widely held across the country and included groups gathered in public squares as well as smaller demonstrations and blockades by trade unions and other business groups. Protesters also fired shots into the air and set up burning piles of tires.

Haitian communities have long been protesting against the government’s ill-conceived plans to farm longleaf pine, which has fueled persistent poverty. The country’s farmers also say the company pushing the plans, Notours, has been unable to assure them that they will get prices for their crops that are consistent with real world prices.

In July, the prime minister acknowledged he was hamstrung by the lack of funds. “There is no money – or enough funds – to address all of our priorities, including … the presence of additional private dollars to begin developing the investments that Haiti needs,” Lamothe said.

Following Lamothe’s comments about the lack of funds, Lamothe attempted to rally a small but vocal anti-dam movement that claims dams would devastate the agricultural economy of the rugged, fertile countryside.

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