PORT-AU-PRINCE — Election candidates in Haiti are jockeying this week ahead of a registration deadline for key November polls, the first since January’s deadly earthquake.
The vote is seen as a key step towards rebuilding the country and its political institution, and has attracted speculation that hip hop star Wyclef Jean may make a run for president.
The UN meanwhile said it would be guaranteeing security for the vote and other international bodies also promised a strong monitoring presence.
NO ONE CAN GUARANTEE ANYTHING WHEN PREVAL CONTROLS THE ELECTORAL COUNCIL. IT IS NAÏVE TO THINK OTHERWISE.
“Everything is ready. We are perfectly capable of giving the necessary assistance to Haitian authorities,” Edmond Mulet, the UN secretary general’s representative in Haiti, said ahead of the August 7 registration deadline
MULET SAYS THIS IN PUBLIC WHILE – 2 WEEKS AGO HE SAID…AND WAS TAPED…”I HAVE TO GO ALONG WITH THIS BUT THERE WILL BE NO ELECTION. WE WILL USE INSECURITY OR LACK OF TECHNICAL ABILITY AS THE EXCUSE TO CANCEL…”
Some 70 political parties and coalitions have registered so far for the national elections, originally scheduled for February 28 and March 3, to choose a successor to President Rene Preval, along with all 99 members of the Chamber of Deputies and one third of the members of the Senate.
The vote was postponed after the devastating January 12 earthquake that killed up to 300,000 people and left 1.3 million homeless.
Among potential candidates is Haitian-born musician Wyclef Jean, who has been coy about whether he intends to stand.
A statement released by his family Friday said Jean, who grew up and lives in the United States, would make a public announcement later in the week.
“At this time, (Jean) remains committed to helping people in his homeland of Haiti and has not made a final decision on whether to seek elected office,” the statement said.
A UN Goodwill Ambassador for Haiti, Jean has worked since January to bring much-needed attention to the poverty-stricken nation, holding fundraisers in the United States and escorting Hollywood stars on visits around the ravaged capital Port-au-Prince.
Six months ahead of the end of his term in February 2011, some here are calling for the incumbent Preval to step down early, accusing him of trying to hold onto power or manipulating the electoral council.
Preval, who also served as president from 1996 to 2001, is constitutionally barred from seeking a third term.
On Thursday, the Organization of American States (OAS) and regional umbrella group for Caribbean nations (CARICOM) promised a thorough observer mission to monitor the electoral process, from candidate registration until the proclamation of results.
“This is the largest, longest and most expensive mission ever undertaken by both organizations,” OAS and CARICOM diplomats said.
THIS SHOULD ACTUALLY READ…THE LONGEST AND MOST PROFITABLE. THESE GROUPS ARE NOT CHARITIES. THEY ARE EMPIRE BUILDERS WHO SAP ECONOMIES OF MONEY THAT COULD GO FOR DEVELOPMENT INSTEAD OF HIGH WAGES FOR INCOMPETENTS WHO COULD NOT FIND WORK ELSEWHERE – EXCEPT, PERHAPS, IN BURGER KING.
The elections are being held as Haiti — which has suffered political turmoil for decades — tries to recover from the chaos caused by the January earthquake.
The Caribbean nation — the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere — has had a long history of dictatorship followed by years of political turmoil and civil unrest.
PERHAPS THE SO-CALLED DICATORSHIP – OF JEAN CLAUDE DUVALIER WAS BETTER THAN WHAT NOW EXISTS WITH THE SITUATION THAT NOW FACES US. WITH DUVALIER THERE WAS LAW AND ORDER, INVESTMENT, JOBS, HEALTH CARE, REAL SCHOOLS NOT THE OBSCENE LIES EXISTING WITH PREVAL, TOURISM AND HOPE…
In 2004, some 1,000 US Marines followed by thousands of UN peacekeepers brought order to Haiti after a bloody rebellion against president Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s rule. A provisional government was then installed.
THE BLOODY REBELLION WAS 40 GUYS WHO WERE GREETED WITH JOY AS THEY REMOVED MURDEROUS POLICE OFFICIALS FROM EACH COMMUNITY. THEY BROUGHT A STABILITY, AS THE DISBANDED ARMY REVIVED – A STABILITY THAT WAS DESTROYED WHEN THE UN FORCES REMOVED THESE PEOPLE…AGAINST THE POPULATION’S DESIRES.
THE ENTIRE SCREW UP THAT PERSISTS WAS CAUSED BY THE OUTSIDE WORLD
Quake survivors say poor governance, corruption and shoddy construction magnified the effects of the 7.0-magnitude January quake, which was much less powerful than an 8.8-magnitude quake in Chile in February, but cause far more damage and loss of life.
THIS IS TRUE, BUT SHODDY EFFORTS TO SAVE THE NATION WILL DOOM THIS COUNTRY TO A DOWNWARD SLIDE.
IT IS TIME FOR A REALITY CHECK. YOU CANNOT HAVE A FAIR ELECTION WITH PREVAL IN CONTROL OF THE ELECTORAL COUNCIL
PREVAL MUST GO.
THERE MUST BE A NEW ELECTORAL COUNCIL.
OTHERWISE THE ENTIRE EFFORT HAS BEEN WASTED AND HAITI IS DOOMED TO ANOTHER GENERATION OF EXPENSIVE HOPELESSNESS AS THE UN MAKES MILLIONS AND HAITI DIES.