Grammy Award-winning hip-hop singer Wyclef Jean isn't going to be president of Haiti. Not now, anyway. The country's Provisional Electoral Council has rejected his candidacy along with 14 others and issued a list of 19 approved contenders for the Nov. 28 vote. Unfortunately, the commission did not explain its ruling, but it is widely understood that Jean and a handful of the others were declared ineligible to run because they had not lived in Haiti for five consecutive years as required by law. Jean initially accepted the decision, then backtracked on Twitter, saying he would challenge it. His first instinct was the right one. He can help Haiti most now by ending his bid with grace.
Jean has done a lot of good for his native Haiti. The pop star has raised international attention and money for the earthquake-stricken nation. His success is a source of pride to many Haitians, and his candidacy inspired young people in particular to engage in democratic politics. Earlier this year, Jean's Yele Haiti Foundation rightly came under scrutiny for using donated funds to pay his production company for benefit concerts, and raised questions about his competency to serve as president. But that is neither the reason for his disqualification nor the issue at hand now.