The Armed Forces and the Police Force

The "Public Forces "la Force Publique) are composed of two (2) distinct bodies:

a. The Armed Forces of Haiti, and

b. The Police Forces.

ARTICLE 263-1:
No other armed corps may exist in the national territory.

ARTICLE 263-2:
All members of the police and armed forces shall take an oath of allegiance and respect for the Constitution and the flag at the time of their enlistment.

CHAPTER I  The Armed Forces

The armed Forces comprise the Land, Sea and Air Forces and the Technical Services.

The Haitian Armed Forces are set up to ensure the security and integrity of the territory of the Republic.

ARTICLE 264-1:
The Armed Forces are in practice commanded by a general officer bearing the TITLE COMMANDER IN CHIEF OF THE HAITIAN ARMED FORCES.

ARTICLE 264-2:
The Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, pursuant to the Constitution, is chosen from among the general officers on active service.

ARTICLE 264-3:
His term is set at three (3) years and is renewable.

The Armed Forces are apolitical. Their members may not be part of any political group or party, and they must observe the strictest neutrality.

ARTICLE 265-1:
Members of the Armed Forces exercise their right to vote, under the Constitution.

The duties of the Armed Forces are:

a. Defend the country in the event of war;

b. Protect the country against threats from abroad;

c. See to surveillance of the land, sea and air boundaries;

d. At the well-founded request of the Executive, they may land assistance to the police when the latter are unable to handle a situation;

e. Assist the Nation in the event of a natural disaster;

f. In addition to their regular duties, the Armed Forces may be assigned to development work.

Military personnel on active duty may not be appointed to any Government post, except temporarily to perform a specialized service.

ARTICLE 267-1:
To be a candidate for an elective post, all military personnel on active duty must be laced on inactive service or on entirement one (1) year before publication of the electoral decree.

ARTICLE 267-2:
The military career is a profession. Its ranking, terms of enlistment, ranks, promotions, discharges, and retirement are determined by the regulations of the Haitian Armed Forces.

ARTICLE 267-3:
Military personnel are under the jurisdiction of a military court only for offenses and crimes committed in wartime or for violations of military discipline.

They may not be discharged, placed on inactive service, placed on half pay, or retired early except with their consent. If such consent is not given, the party concerned may lodge an appeal with the court of competent jurisdiction.

ARTICLE 267-4:
Military personnel retain for life the last rank obtained in the Haitian Armed Forces. They may be deprived of their rank only by a final judgment by a court of competent jurisdiction.

ARTICLE 267-5:
The State must award benefits to military personnel of all ranks, fully guaranteeing their physical security.

Within the framework of compulsory civilian national services for both sexes, provided for by article 52-3 of the Constitution, the Armed Forces participate in organizing and supervising that service.

Military service is compulsory for all Haitians who have attained eighteen (18) years of age.

The law sets the method of recruitment, and the length and regulations for the performance of these services.

ARTICLE 268-1:
Every citizen has the right to armed self defense, within the bounds of this domicile, but has no right to bear arms without express well-founded authorization from the Chief of Police.

ARTICLE 268-2:
Possession of a firearm must be reported to the police.

ARTICLE 268-3:
The Armed Forces have a monopoly on the manufacture, import, export, use and possession of weapon of war and their munitions, as well as war material.

CHAPTER II  The Police Forces

The Police Force is an armed body.

It operates under the Ministry of Justice.

ARTICLE 269-1:
It is established to ensure law and order and protect the life and property of citizens.

Its organization and mode of operation are regulated by law.

The Commander in Chief of the Police Forces is appointed, in accordance with the Constitution, for a three (3) year term, which is renewable.

An Academy and a Police School have been established, whose organization and operations are set by law.

Specialized sections, particularly the Penitentiary Administration, the Firemen's Service, the Traffic Police, the Highway Police, Criminal Investigations, the Narcotics Service and the Anti-Smuggling Service, have been established by the law governing the organization, operation and location of the Police Forces.

The police, as an auxiliary of the Justice System, investigate violations, offenses and crimes committed, in order to discover and arrest the perpetrators of them.

In the exercise of their duties, members of the "Public Forces" are subject to civil and penal liability in the manner and under the conditions stipulated by the Constitution and by law.

CHAPTER III  General Provisions

National and legal holidays shall be celebrated by the Government and private and commercial enterprises.

ARTICLE 275-1:
The national holidays are:

1. Independence Day, January 1;

2. Heroes' Day, january 2;

3. Agriculture and Labor Day, May 1;

4. Flag Day and University Day, may 18; and

5. Battle of Vertières'õ Day, which is also ARMED FORCES DAY, November 18.

ARTICLE 275-2:
Legal holidays shall be determined by law.

The National Assembly may not ratify any international treaty, convention or agreement containing clauses contrary to this Constitution.

ARTICLE 276-1:
International treaties, conventions and agreements are ratified in the form of a decree.

ARTICLE 276-2:
Once international treaties or agreements are approved and ratified in the manner stipulated by the Constitution, they become part of the legislation of the country and abrogate any laws in conflict with them.

The Haitian State may join an Economic Community of States insofar as the association agreement stimulates the social and economic development of the Haitian Republic and does not contain any clause contrary to this Constitution.

No place or part of the territory may be declared in a state of siege except in the event of civil war or invasion by a foreign force.

ARTICLE 278-1:
The act of the President of the Republic declaring a state of siege must be countersigned by the Prime Minister and by all of the Ministers and contain an immediate convocation of the National Assembly to decide on the desirability of the measure.

ARTICLE 278-2:
The National Assembly decides with the Executive Branch as to what constitutional guarantees may be suspended in the pàrts of the territory placed under a state of siege.

ARTICLE 278-3:
The state of siege is lifted if it is not renewed by a vote of the National Assembly every fifteen (15) days after its entry into force.

ARTICLE 278-4:
The National Assembly shall be in session for the entire duration of the state of siege.

Thirty (30) days after his election, the President of the Republic must deposit with the Clerk of the Court of First Instance of his domicile a notarized inventory of all his movable and immovable goods, and he shall do the same at the end of his term.

ARTICLE 279-1:
The Prime Minister, the Ministers and Secretaries of State are subject to the same obligation within thirty (30) days of their installation and of the termination of their duties.

No general expenditures or compensation whatever shall be granted to members of the major organs of the State for any special duties that may be assigned to them.

In national elections, the State assumes responsibility, in proportion to the number of votes cast, for a portion of the expenses incurred in the election campaigns.

ARTICLE 281-1:
Only parties that obtain nationally ten percent (10%) of the votes cast, with a minimum of five percent (5%) of the votes cast in one Department, are eligible to receive these Government funds.