News Release

Is U.S. Facilitating Rigged Elections Process in Haiti?

HaitiThe Miami Herald reports: “Now as Haiti prepares to mark another quake anniversary, it is also preparing to welcome back a functioning Senate and lower house after 14 new Senators and 92 Deputies were elected in the much-criticized Aug. 9 and Oct. 25 elections.

“While in theory Martelly’s one-man rule should be curbed, observers and critics say much will depend on the configuration of each of the chambers where no one political party enjoys a majority. …

“‘The constitution doesn’t give the president the power to take decrees. Every decree President Martelly has taken is illegal,’ said [Haitian Senator Jocelerme Privert].

“As promised, Martelly did issue an executive order on elections. But he also issued seven other law-binding orders including a controversial boundary change that triggered weeks of violent protests and street blockades north of the capital, where his beach house and other ritzy private beachfront homes are located.

“In addition to the decrees, he also made more than 60 administrative orders…”

ETANT DUPAIN, in Haiti,gaetantguevara at gmail.com, @gaetantguevara,
Dupain is founder and director of Kombit Productions. He is a freelance journalist and producer who has also worked as a fixer for many media outlets.

BRIAN CONCANNON, Brian at IJDH.org, @HaitiJustice
Executive Director, Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti, Concannon said today: “Completing Haiti’s election process is important, but respecting minimum standards for fair elections is essential. The Obama administration’s insistence on imposing leaders elected through fraud and violence will condemn Haiti to years of unrest.” Concannon wrote the piece ‘Instill Integrity in Haiti’s Election” in October for the Miami Herald.

JAKE JOHNSTON, johnston at cepr.net or via Dan Beeton, beeton at cepr.net, @JakobJohnston
Johnston is a research associate at the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, and lead blogger for its “Haiti: Relief and Reconstruction Watch” blog as well as a contributor to the Haiti Elections Blog. Johnson said today: “As Haiti enters it’s sixth year since the earthquake, it faces yet another crisis – a political one that tears at its democratic institutions. The Haitian people could use the support and solidarity of the international community to ensure free and fair elections are able to take place. Instead, the U.S. and other countries and organizations are pushing for Haiti to move ahead with run-off elections resulting from a fraudulent first round.”