Today's Date: August 8, 2022
Celebrating the one-year anniversary of the signing of the Canada-Quebec Asymmetrical Agreement on the Canada-Wide Early Learnin   •   BYRON ALLEN'S ALLEN MEDIA GROUP SIGNS VETERAN NEWS & POLITICAL TELEVISION HOST MARC LAMONT HILL TO THE GRIO   •   Greenberg Traurig Vice Chair Lori G. Cohen Named to Benchmark Litigation's 2022 Top 10 Women in Litigation List   •   Greenwood and Travis Hunter Sign NIL Deal and Partner to Launch the “Choose Black” Campaign   •   Mogul Launches Nationwide Campaign Called “Build Better Boards” to Champion More Diverse Boards   •   “What I Want to Know with Kevin P. Chavous” Podcast Launches Third Season in Search of Answers to Education’s   •   Government of Canada honours national historic significance of Second World War code breakers   •   GovX Raises Over $11,000 for FOLDS OF HONOR Veteran Nonprofit for Month of July   •   LIBERTY Dental Plan of New York Awards 12 Scholarships in Partnership with PENCIL   •   Test Release special characters in the headline © ® ™ é ñ ü ç î ò   •   LIBERTY Dental Plan of New York Awards 12 Scholarships in Partnership with PENCIL   •   The Honourable Daniel Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, will be traveling to the North through August 8 to 19, 2022   •   Test Release special characters in the headline © ® ™ é ñ ü ç î ò   •   Greenwood and Travis Hunter Sign NIL Deal and Partner to Launch the “Choose Black” Campaign   •   AARP Illinois Thanks Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin and Senator Tammy Duckworth For Historic Vote Toward Real Relief on Prescr   •   Los Angeles City Council Votes NO on SB 930 - the 4 a.m. Bar Bill, Sends Strong Message to Sacramento and Senator Wiener that Pu   •   Mogul Launches Nationwide Campaign Called “Build Better Boards” to Champion More Diverse Boards   •   Poll: Over Half of Voters of Color Oppose Government Negotiation of Drug Prices Once They Learn About Consequences for Patients   •   Who's Next? Black Women's Health Imperative Urges Voters to Affirm Abortion Rights in Wake of Kansas Abortion-Referendum   •   AARP Pennsylvania Thanks Senator Casey For Historic Vote Toward Real Relief on Prescription Drug Pricing

Notice: Undefined index: currentSection in /home/blackradionetwork/public_html/page.php on line 176
Bookmark and Share

US Lawmakers Call For Fair Elections In Haiti

WASHINGTON - Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), a leading proponent for democracy, human rights and economic empowerment in Haiti, and 44 other Members of Congress are urging Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to support free, fair and inclusive elections in Haiti this November.

The Congresswoman and her colleagues are concerned that the exclusion of over a dozen political parties – including the country’s largest party, Fanmi Lavalas – from the November ballot is undemocratic and unconstitutional. They also raise concerns about Haitian voters having access to voting cards and polling stations, particularly those voters displaced by the devastating earthquake earlier this year.

The signers of the letter believe that if the Haitian government does not implement basic democratic reforms, the election will not be viewed as legitimate by the Haitian people or the international community, the next government will lack the ability to govern, and the ongoing recovery process could be impeded.

They conclude by stating, “The United States government should also state unequivocally that it will not provide funding for elections that do not meet these minimum, basic democratic requirements.” 

The text of the letter appears below:

Dear Secretary Clinton:

We are writing to express our concerns about the November 28 presidential and parliamentary elections in Haiti. We believe it is imperative that these elections be free, fair, and inclusive, and result in a government that is legitimate and perceived as legitimate. The November 28 elections are particularly important to re-establish an effective legislature, establish political accountability for the expenditure of large amounts of money, and resolve Haiti’s current societal disputes in a peaceful and democratic manner.

As it currently stands, Haiti’s Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) has decided to exclude candidates from over a dozen political parties from participating in the elections, including Fanmi Lavalas, Haiti’s largest political party. The exclusion will undermine both Haitians’ right to vote and the resulting government’s ability to govern.

Last November, the CEP, which was appointed through a process not recognized in Haiti’s Constitution, excluded 14 parties from parliamentary elections then scheduled for February 2010, without providing a written, comprehensive explanation. Although those elections were postponed and rescheduled for this November 28, the CEP refused to revisit the disqualifications, which have been widely condemned by civil society and parties across Haiti’s political spectrum. A previous CEP, with many of the same members, also excluded Fanmi Lavalas and other parties from Senatorial elections in April 2009. Haitian voters boycotted, and most observers estimated a 3-6% voter turnout.

Although some may argue that Haiti has more pressing problems, allowing flawed elections now will come back to haunt the international community later. Haiti’s next government will be called upon to make difficult decisions in the reconstruction process that will have a lasting impact on Haitian society, such as land reform and allocation of reconstruction projects among urban and rural areas. Conferring these decisions on a government perceived as illegitimate is a recipe for disaster.

Haiti’s next government will also have to ask its citizens to make sacrifices, such as losing land through eminent domain, or take risks, such as relocating to a new displacement camp. Citizens are unlikely to sacrifice for or trust a government that obtained power through dishonest means.

President John Kennedy famously remarked, “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.” Running transparently unfair, exclusive elections, with the support of the international community, will leave many Haitians to conclude that they have no choice but to protest the elections and the consequent government through social disruption. That disruption threatens to severely limit such a government’s ability to govern, and imperils the United States’ past and future investments in Haiti’s reconstruction.

The CEP and international community must also ensure that all Haitians entitled to vote are afforded the opportunity to do so. This includes all those who have lost their voting cards and other identity documents in the earthquake this year, as well as those who have turned 18 since the last elections in 2006. We are particularly concerned that the 1.5 million people who have been internally displaced have access to identity cards and polling stations close to the camps where they live so that they can vote. This is also essential to holding legitimate elections.

We call on you to make a clear statement that elections must include all eligible political parties and ready access to voting for all Haitians, including the displaced. The United States government should also state unequivocally that it will not provide funding for elections that do not meet these minimum, basic democratic requirements. 

Sincerely,

Maxine Waters; Donald Payne; William Delahunt; Barbara Lee; Debbie Wasserman Schultz; Alcee L. Hastings; Charles B. Rangel; Jan Schakowsky; Dennis Kucinich; Hank Johnson; Jim McDermott; Yvette D. Clarke; John W. Olver; Keith Ellison; Sam Farr; Donna M. Christensen; Raúl Grijalva; Michael Honda; Betty McCollum; Laura Richardson; Alan Grayson; Chellie Pingree; Eleanor Holmes Norton; Danny K. Davis; Sheila Jackson Lee; Elijah Cummings; Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick; Lynn Woolsey; Chaka Fattah; Fortney "Pete" Stark; Al Green; Stephen Lynch; Donna F. Edwards; John Lewis; Bob Filner; Diane Watson; Bennie G. Thompson; Tammy Baldwin; John Garamendi; Bobby L. Rush; Jesse L. Jackson Jr.; Bart Gordon; Melvin L. Watt; Corrine Brown; Lucille Roybal-Allard

Members of Congress


STORY TAGS: BLACK , AFRICAN AMERICAN , MINORITY , CIVIL RIGHTS , DISCRIMINATION , RACISM , NAACP , URBAN LEAGUE , RACIAL EQUALITY , BIAS , EQUALITY



Back to top
| Back to home page
Video

White House Live Stream
LIVE VIDEO EVERY SATURDAY
alsharpton Rev. Al Sharpton
9 to 11 am EST
jjackson Rev. Jesse Jackson
10 to noon CST


Video

LIVE BROADCASTS
Sounds Make the News ®
WAOK-Urban
Atlanta - WAOK-Urban
KPFA-Progressive
Berkley / San Francisco - KPFA-Progressive
WVON-Urban
Chicago - WVON-Urban
KJLH - Urban
Los Angeles - KJLH - Urban
WKDM-Mandarin Chinese
New York - WKDM-Mandarin Chinese
WADO-Spanish
New York - WADO-Spanish
WBAI - Progressive
New York - WBAI - Progressive
WOL-Urban
Washington - WOL-Urban

Listen to United Natiosns News