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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Haitians go to the polls on Sunday

haitiCSMS Magazine

Another round of elections are set to begin on Sunday as Haitians go to the polls to elect a new president. As usual, there are many candidates on the platforms. On a quick flashback, there were elections on August 9th, 2015. Then, it was to elect new members of Parliament. It didn’t happen without violence. On the Southeast, our correspondent Michaelle Velascot reported several death as a result of partisan bickering. Nonetheless, Haitian authorities proceeded with the vote anyway to the exception of Port-au-Prince. According to sources, the Port-au-Prince vote was not allowed to proceed to avoid a bloodbath. Consequently, elections for representatives in the greater Port-au-Prince area were then postponed. They will take place this Sunday as well.

There are 58 presidential candidates, all seeking to replace Martelly and then take their seat in the presidential chair. Many of them are simply window dressers. Out of the 58, the Nouvelliste, a daily Port-au-Prince newspaper, had created a list of 12 potential candidates with strong political background with a much better chance at winning. CSMS Magazine has decided to publish their names along with their political party affiliations. Here they are:

a.         Jean Marie Charles Henry Baker from “Respect”

b.         Steven Iverson Benoit from “Konviksyon”

c.         Jean Henry Ceant from “Renmen Ayiti”

d.         Jude Celestin from “Lapeh”

e.         Simon Dieuseul Desras from “Palmiste”

g.         Sauveur Pierre Etienne from “OPL”

h.         Jacky Lumarque from “Vérité”

i.         Samuel Madistin from “MOPOD”

j.         Moise Jean Charles from “Pitit Desalin”

k.        Jovenel Moise from “PHTK (Parti Haitien Tet Kale)”

l.         Maryse Narcisse from “Lavalas”

m.       Edmonde Supplice Beauzile from “Regroupement Politique Fusion”

Out of these 12 people, only 3 are making headlines in the Haitian media. Furthermore, they are also the topic of most conversations within the Haitian population. These three are Jude Celestin, Moise Jean Charles and Jovenel Moise. However Moise Jean Charles seems to be the one with the better chance to win it all. He is quite popular among the population, especially in the North. These upcoming elections are sure going to be filled with suspense.

Also, as for the level of insecurity, demonstrations as well as street fights between HNP (Haitian National Police) and bandits, no one knows for sure how it’s going to play out. Lately, the violence has become quite the norm, and it may escalate leading up to Sunday. Just recently a fight broke out between gang members in Cite Soleil—the biggest slum in Haiti. According to news reports, they were fighting over money that had been distributed.  Gun battle erupted, causing the death of 2 pregnant women who were struck by stray bullets. Many people were also reported injured. HNP has been on high alert. Haitian National Radio also reported about 10,000 cops will be deployed as well as UN troops currently stationed in the country. Unless there is a landslide, election results may not be known right away.

Note: Our Port-au-Prince correspondents: Yves Duchet and Claire Bijou contributed to this report. Like us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/csmsmagazine

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