Michel Martelly Biography

(President of Haiti)

Birthday: February 12, 1961 (Aquarius)

Born In: Port-au-Prince

Michel Martelly is a Haitian politician, musician, and businessman. He is currently the President of Haiti. Famous by the stage name “Sweet Micky”, Martelly was one of the most popular musicians of Haiti for over a decade. He first achieved recognition for his musical work in the Haitian compas style, a kind of dance music with Creole lyrics. Later in his musical career, Martelly was also briefly a club owner and, during this time, he became involved in Haitian politics. Martelly supported the coup d’etat against Jean-Bertrand Aristide and when four years later Aristide once again assumed presidency, Martelly stayed away from Haiti for almost a year. In 2010, he threw his hat into the ring and won the Haitian presidential election as candidate of the Repons Peyizan (Farmers’ Response Party). Martelly’s election marked the first peaceful transition of power, from one party to another, in Haitian history. Among Martelly’s first priorities as president, he formulated a plan to reinstate the military, which had been banned by Aristide. Martelly also formed a coalition with other world leaders, including former U.S. President Bill Clinton, to support Haiti’s fiscal growth and stability. Later in his administration, Martelly was accused of corruption. Martelly’s leadership has been targeted in some Haitian protests, which have called for his resignation
Quick Facts

Also Known As: Sweet Micky, Michel Joseph Martelly, Sweet Mickey

Age: 63 Years, 63 Year Old Males


Spouse/Ex-: Sophia Martelly

children: Malaika-Michel Martelly, Michel-Alexandre Martelly, Michel-Olivier Martelly, Michel-Yani Martelly

Musicians Presidents

political ideology: Political party - Farmers' Response Party

City: Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Founder/Co-Founder: Superior Council of the Judiciary of Colombia

More Facts

education: Red Rocks Community College

Childhood & Early Life
Michel Martelly was born on 12 February 1961 born in Port-au-Prince, to a middle-class family. His father was an executive for the Shell Oil company and his maternal grandfather was a comic troubadour who wrote political protest songs as well as apolitical music.
Martelly graduated from the Saint Louis de Gonzague high school and then enrolled at the Haitian Military Academy, though he was promptly expelled.
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In 1984, Martelly moved to Miami, Florida, where he attended college and worked in construction.
In 1986, having completed just one semester of university, he returned to Haiti for one year, around the time of President Jean-Claude Duvalier’s exile.
After one more stint in Miami, Martelly again returned to Haiti in 1988. Around this time, he began playing keyboard in Port-au-Prince.
In 1988, Martelly recorded his first single, ‘Ooo La La’, which became a nationwide hit.
In 1991, following the Haitian coup d’etat, Martelly continued playing in Port-au-Prince suburbs such as Petonville and Kenscoff, gaining many supporters for his music among the coup’s proponents.
Between 1988 and 2008, he released fourteen studio albums and some live CDs, all under the name Sweet Micky.
In 1992, Martelly played at a protest against the arrival of the UN representative who was meant to orchestrate Aristide’s return to power in Haiti.
In 1995, following Aristide’s reinstatement as President, Martelly’s name appeared on a “hit list” of known Aristide opponents; the threat prompted him to remain abroad on tour for almost a full year.
In 1997, Martelly participated in various forms of social activism and aid, including participating on an educational music video program aimed to combat AIDS, called ‘Knowledge is Power’, and forming the Foundation Rose et Blanc, to fight poverty in Haiti.
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With the 2004 coup d’etat, Gerard Latortue became Prime Minister; he was a friend of Martelly.
In 2007, Martelly moved back to Haiti from Miami, where he had been living with his family. As a result of the move and the financial downturn, he lost three properties and had to default on over $1 million in loans.
In 2010, Martelly ran for the Haitian presidency, making it into the runoff after he contested the first count.
On 4 April 2011, Martelly’s election was announced; he defeated his opponent, Mirlande Manigat, with 60 percent of the vote.
On 14 May 2011, Martelly was sworn in as Haitian president and on the following day, Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive resigned, allowing Martelly to choose a Prime Minister for his administration.
In August 2011, he unveiled his plan to reinstate the Haitian military, to mixed public opinion.
In September 2011, Martelly teamed with various business executives, bank managers and politicians, including Bill Clinton, to create a plan to jumpstart Haitian economy.
In April 2012, he was accused receiving bribe in lieu of awarding a contract to a Dominican Republic construction company.
In May 2012, Senate elections were postponed until 26 October 2014 and then again, indefinitely. This caused huge public outrage. Many of the protests targeted Martelly’s faulty leadership in allowing the continuous postponement.
On 17 January 2015, protesters descended on Port-au-Prince to campaign against the dissolution of Parliament and to demand the president’s resignation.
Awards & Achievements
In March 2012, Martelly was awarded the Grand Cross with Gold Breast Star of the Dominican Republic’s Order of Merit of Duarte, Sanchez and Mella.
Personal Life & Legacy
In 1987, Martelly married his then-girlfriend, Sophia Saint-Remy, in Miami, Florida. The couple has four children: Olivier, Sandro, Yani, and Malaika.
Martelly claims that, as a young man, he was thrown out of the Haitian Military Academy because he allegedly impregnated a general’s goddaughter.
Martelly is a cousin of Richard Morse, another Haitian musician and also a hotel manager.
As a musical performer, one of Martelly’s trademarks was his flamboyant style, regularly dressing in drag or partially stripping onstage.
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