PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) – A new Haitian Cabinet and other government leaders were sworn in Monday as President Michel Martelly runs the troubled Caribbean country without a parliament.
The 20 ministers and more than a dozen secretaries of state were named roughly a week after parliament dissolved amid a bitter stalemate between Martelly and a group of opposition lawmakers. They were installed Monday in a ceremony at the site of the former national palace, which toppled in the cataclysmic 2010 earthquake that destroyed much of Port-au-Prince and surrounding areas.
Martelly kept half of his former Cabinet ministers in their posts in what he touted as a “consensus government” reached after negotiations with a number of Haiti’s opposition parties. Changes were made in several key ministries, including justice and planning.
“This government we install today is the fruit of dialogue between the sons and daughters of the country,” Martelly said.
Haiti’s president began ruling by decree last week while trying to steer the impoverished country toward long-delayed legislative and municipal elections.
Prime Minister Evans Paul, who was in the moderate opposition to Martelly before joining his government, was sworn in last week. He will run day-to-day government affairs.
The hardline opposition to Martelly has promised a wave of intensified street protests to try and pressure him from office. Martelly took power in 2011 and is due to leave next year.