PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti, Sept 20, CMC – The Organization of American States (OAS) says its Secretary General, Luis Almagro, has met Haiti’s Prime Minister of Haiti, Evans Paul, to discuss the work of the Electoral Observation Mission (EOM) that will be deployed in the French-speaking Caribbean country for the October 25 presidential and legislative elections.
“The deployment of this mission is a further demonstration of Inter-American solidarity and the commitment of my administration to continue supporting the strengthening of democracy in Haiti”, Almagro is quoted as saying.
The OAS said that during the talks, Almagro applauded the government’s efforts for ensuring that the first round of legislative elections took place on August 9.
In addition, the OAS said Almagro expressed concern over acts of violence that affected the electoral process and “urged the government to make the efforts necessary to investigate and punish those responsible”.
The meeting between the OAS secretary general and Evans comes even as the Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) announced that the final results of the first round of legislative elections would be delayed.
CEP adviser Néhémie Joseph explained that many dispute cases of dispute before the National Electoral Office (BCEN) had caused the delay in the publication of results.
He said he hopes the results would be published by the end of this month.
The second round of the legislative elections will take place on October 25, the same day 54 candidates will seek to replace President Michel Martelly as head of state.
Meanwhile, the group, Solidarite Fanm Ayisyèn (SOFA), has expressed disappointment that not enough women had been allowed by the CEP to contest the polls.
It has accused the CEP of undermining “all the efforts of women’s organizations to ensure a representation of at least 30 per cent women in parliament:.
The group said after a heighten public awareness campaign by various women groups throughout the country, only 23 women were able to register among the 232 candidates for the Senate and 129 out of 1,621 candidates for deputies.
“These disappointing figures obviously can be explained by the socio-cultural status of women, the patriarchal mode of operation of political parties and education-related problems but also to the lack of a true civic education campaign of CEP to encourage women to stand as candidates in legislative,” the group said.
It added that the “electoral process was designed to exclude a category of the population, especially women, not only as candidates but also as voters”.