Media Center

Press Release


  November 27, 2005

Following the announcement by Haiti’s Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) of the dates for the country’s upcoming elections, the Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), José Miguel Insulza, reiterated his “cautious optimism” about the electoral process and considered positive the fact that an official election date had been set for the first time.

“The OAS has supported the Haitian electoral process from its beginnings and can affirm that the CEP’s concern is not only to hold elections, but to hold good elections which will enjoy the credibility of all actors in the process and ensure a good turnout of voters after the holiday period,” Insulza said. “Although the electoral process was slow to get off the ground, considerable progress has been made, which allows us to be cautiously optimistic about having organized, orderly and credible elections early in the new year.”

The Secretary General noted that the CEP established the dates of January 8, 2006, for the first-round presidential and legislative elections, February 15 for second round and March 5 for municipal and local elections, after days of careful review of the state of electoral preparations and the outstanding tasks to be completed.

The OAS Secretary General mentioned several critical advancements in the electoral process, notably the successful conclusion of the massive voter registration campaign which registered 3,533,430 Haitian citizens, or over 80% of the total eligible voter population. CEP regional offices, known as Departmental Electoral Offices (BEDs) and Communal Electoral Offices (BECs), have been established throughout the country. The distribution of Haitian identification cards has also begun, as has the printing of ballots and the recruitment of 36,000 poll workers for the three polling days.

Secretary General Insulza said that despite the inability to retain the February 7, 2006, date for the turnover of power to a new elected president, “it is clear that the interim government of President Boniface Alexandre and Prime Minister Gerard Latortue has every intention of leaving office as soon as the electoral process is completed.”

Insulza urged all actors in Haiti, notably the political parties and civil society groups, to continue to participate actively in the electoral process in order to contribute towards transparent, inclusive and credible elections. He also reiterated the continued support of the Organization of American States for the elections in Haiti and for the critical post-elections period of institution-building and development.

Reference: E-271/05