Supporters hold portraits of Haitian presidential candidate Michel Martelly during a rally
Haitians Saturday faced a crucial decision over who will lead their quake-ravaged country -- a popular singer or a former first lady -- as campaigning ended in the presidential election.
Sunday's vote brings to a close a long and turbulent election season that sparked fraud charges and deadly violence after a first round of balloting on November 28, which also has slowed progress in Haiti's recovery from the 2010 earthquake.
UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon reminded Haitians Saturday it was a "historic opportunity to shape the future of their country" and urged everyone to ensure the vote provides the political stability needed for the country's reconstruction.
Former first lady, Mirlande Manigat and Michel Martelly, a singer with a strong following among Haiti's youth, are competing for the job of rebuilding a nation beset by deep poverty, a quake-shattered infrastructure and a cholera epidemic.
Watching from the sidelines are two former presidents and foes -- Jean-Claude Duvalier and Jean-Bertrand Aristide -- whose returns from exile have been reminders of Haiti's history of violent political upheaval.
Aristide, 57, lost no time wading into the political fray on his return Friday seven years after being driven from power by a rebellion and under pressure from the United States and France.
"Haiti's ills have worsened," he said in a televised speech moments after stepping off a private jet from South Africa with his family.
And indeed, Haiti's streets are patrolled by UN peacekeepers and much of its capital lies in ruins from the January 2010 quake, which killed 220,000 people.
Aristide's return two days before the election represents a political wildcard for whoever emerges as the victor in Sunday's balloting.
A Western diplomat posted here told AFP on condition of anonymity that Aristide's arrival now "could be an additional element of trouble. There is a need for a serene social and political climate. His return can only add to the confusion."