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United Nations development director Garry Conille was appointed as Haiti’s new prime minister Tuesday, amid criticism of the lack of transparency in the process used to select him to lead the troubled country, Al Jazeera reported.

The nine-member transition council was formed following former Prime Minister Ariel Henry’s resignation in April. Its mandate is to return Haiti to democracy and stability – armed groups and a humanitarian crisis have battered the island, where no election has been held since 2021 following the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse that year.

Gang violence killed 1,500 people from January to March and has displaced more than 362,000.

Meanwhile, last week, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) warned that Haiti’s healthcare system was nearing collapse, Agence France-Presse reported.

Conille, a doctor, has served as UNICEF’s regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean since January 2023. Appointed as Haiti’s prime minister in October 2011, he stepped down four months later after clashing with then-President Michel Martelly.

A member of the council told the Associated Press that the choice of Conille was made by a six-to-one vote. Two council members do not have voting rights.

Tuesday’s breakthrough came weeks after an initial attempt to appoint a prime minister failed. An initiative by four council members to name former Sports Minister Fritz Belizaire was withdrawn amid outrage over a lack of regard for the council’s protocol.

After Conille’s appointment, some civil society groups including the Montana Accord, criticized the lack of transparency by the council in selecting the prime minister and its pace.

The group accused the council of not taking any “consequential measures” since being installed as “the suffering of the people is getting worse, while the gangs are taking control of more territory and committing more crimes,” the AP wrote.

The new prime minister will succeed Michel Patrick Boisvert, who had an interim post after Henry resigned in April when he was locked out of Haiti after gangs seized Port-au-Prince’s airport.

Henry was on a visit to Kenya to discuss a UN-backed police mission led by the African nation.

That mission is aiming to assist Haiti’s beleaguered police force in fighting gang violence that has swept large parts of the country and seen 80 percent of Port-au-Prince fall under the control of criminal gangs.

After Conille’s nomination, the transition council will have to establish a provisional electoral commission to organize a presidential election by 2026, when the council’s mandate expires.

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