"After weeks of quiet but painstaking reflection with my wife and daughter, I have chosen to end my bid for the presidency of Haiti," the singer-songwriter said in a statement.
"This was not an easy conclusion to reach; but it is one that was thoughtfully made," Jean
The Haitian-born Jean
, who has lived most of his life in the United States, said he would now focus on his music. He said he planned to release a new album next year titled "If I were President, the Haitian Experience."
Haiti's electoral council ruled last month that Jean
failed to meet a requirement that presidential candidates maintain five consecutive years of residency in the country before running.
Days after the electoral court's decision, Jean
released a song on Haiti's radio airwaves accusing outgoing President Rene Preval of engineering his rejection as a candidate.Jean
had said he would appeal the decision, but officials said the electoral body's ruling was definitive under Haitian law.
Popular among Haiti's youth, Jean
faced questions whether a celebrity with no political experience was the best person to govern the country, which is struggling to recover from a January earthquake that killed as many as 300,000 people.
"Though my run for the presidency was cut short, I feel it was not in vain," Jean
left Haiti with his family to live in New York at age 9 and launched his music career in the United States.We're sure he's crushed. Do you think he should have continued fighting to be president of Haiti?