A Solution to Haiti's Political and Electoral Crisis by Stanley Lucas

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A Solution to Haiti's Political and Electoral Crisis
By Stanley Lucas
December 9, 2010

Before the January 12 earthquake, the situation in Haiti was already dire. Haiti ranked at the bottom of almost every development index - 158th for education, 70% unemployment, and average life expectancy at 52. It ranked among the top four most corrupt countries in the past several years.

More than 90% of the economy and the wealth of the country are controlled by a corrupt business (Groupe de Bourdon) cartel that does not pay taxes.

The January earthquake exacerbated the situation bringing unimaginable devastation to the country.

More than 300,000 people died and another 400,000 were injured.

The country lost an estimated US$40 billion, 6,000 schools and 500,000 houses, leaving people with no collateral to rebuild.

Then, just when it seemed things could not get any worse, Haiti had an outbreak of cholera, which had not been seen in country for 200 years.

This is the context in which Preval, the United Nations and OAS pushed for elections on November 28. Not only was the electoral infrastructure almost completely devastated, but also no one believed that a peaceful transition of power was even a remote possibility.

Civil society groups and analysts had been sounding the warning bells about Preval organizing an electoral coup, but still elections proceeded.

The November 28 elections were held in complete chaos.

Rene Preval and the partisan Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) blatantly rigged the elections by putting in place a partisan team of poll workers, instituting a campaign of violence and political intimidation, manipulating the voter lists, stuffing ballot boxes, changing the results (even after international observers watched the vote count at the tabulation center), and enlisting international spokespeople to defend the elections, see:

1. solutionshaiti.blogspot.com/2010/12/ha...
2. solutionshaiti.blogspot.com/2010/12/haiti-preval-clings-to-his-coup.html

None of this should come as a surprise.

Preval has never organized a free and fair election.

He has rigged all five elections during his ten years as president of Haiti.

Fact: He rigged the April 7, 1997 elections by manipulating the results.

His own Prime Minister, Rosny Smart, blocked his version of the results, which led to the prime minister's resignation and the dissolution of parliament by Preval on January 11, 1999.

Fact: President Preval and Aristide rigged the May 21 and November 2000 elections.

Those electoral coups coupled with corruption, repression and drug trafficking led to a citizen revolt and the resignation of President Aristide in 2004.

Fact: President Preval rigged the April 19 and June 21, 2009 senatorial elections giving him absolute control of the senate.

And finally, he conceived of and implemented an electoral coup during the November 28, 2010 legislative and presidential elections.

Fact: In spite of widespread irregularities, there is consensus that Mirlande Manigat and Michel Martelly qualified for the presidential runoff.

The domestic and international media and the OAS publicly announced those results.

We know that the CEP and Preval then changed the results the next morning in favor of their candidate, Jude Celestin, removing Martelly from the race.

Fact: As a result of the level of fraud and ballot stuffing, we know that it is difficult to sort out who won in the legislative elections.

Given this context, we must come up with a quick and decisive solution that, most importantly, reflects the will of the people.

Their frustration and outrage at this sham election will not simply go away with calls for "calm".

A reasonable and responsive solution must be presented or this situation could spiral out of control.

The following are elements of workable solution:

1. Quickly replace the current CEP with nine new members in accordance with Article 289 of the constitution.

Within the next three days, the eight sectors of civil society represented on the CEP should designate new CEP representatives.

The executive branch should also designate a new, non-partisan CEP representative.

2. Name a new Director General for the CEP.

3. The new CEP should organize the presidential runoff in January 2011 as scheduled.

Legislative and local elections should be postponed until April or May 2011 to allow the situation to diffuse and to ensure that the electoral infrastructure is brought up to date, including updating the voter registration lists.

4. Legislative and local elections should be opened to all parties that meet legal requirements, including those that boycotted the November 28 elections.

5. If this solution is not acceptable to the Haitian leadership, then President Rene Preval should resign, and Article 149 of the constitution should be invoked allowing a member of the Supreme Court to become interim president.

In this scenario, elections should be organized within 90 days.

There is no time to let this situation play out further.

Haiti is stressed to the limit so a workable solution that contains these elements must be presented and put in place immediately.

Carole Frerot, December 9 2010, 10:18 AM

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Carole Frerot: Mr. Stanley Lucas sa-a, se sa yo rele : - “Un intellectual de gauche”, - Une sorte de politisyen... read more >
Tiboule Harold, 9-Dec-10 1:24 pm
I disagree Lucas is a conservative,a champion of democracy, human rights in Haiti. He is one of our best advocate. The... read more >
Carole Frerot, 9-Dec-10 3:07 pm
I think you are all missing the point. The proposal of Stanley Lucas to solve the electoral and political crisis is... read more >
General Dessalines, 9-Dec-10 3:11 pm
Personally I think Lucas is a questionable character but I sense Tiboule is a Preval and Celestin supporter who... read more >
Zac, 9-Dec-10 3:28 pm
Zac That is the problem....Every time we have a guy who spends a few years in power, ccumulating all the wealth in the... read more >
Kamoken, 9-Dec-10 3:59 pm
Carole: I agree with you that Stanley Lucas's proposal to solve the crisis is a very good one. And you right on the... read more >
Martine Vilien, 9-Dec-10 4:11 pm
Very good point Zac. We need First, let's solve the electoral crisis by using Stanley Lucas Lucas's proposal His... read more >
Belinda Joseph, 9-Dec-10 4:27 pm
Carole, here is why I think Mr. Stanley Lucas is a dangerous confused person. Let’s review the Stanley Lucas... read more >
Jean-mary Francois, 9-Dec-10 5:37 pm
You can never implement this solution without the exisitence of a concesus or a referenduum. The democratic process... read more >
Tiboule Harold, 9-Dec-10 9:28 pm
I agree but who is going to hold him accountable? The man controls the CEP, he controls parliament, the police and the... read more >
Zac, 10-Dec-10 8:20 am
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