Haiti scraps first election results; new poll in October
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti – Haiti’s Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) has accepted a recommendation from an independent commission to start presidential elections from scratch, throwing out the results of the first round of voting held last October.
The decision follows a report last week from the Independent Commission of Evaluation and Verification which pointed to major fraud and misconduct in the first round.
Under an agreement signed by political parties on February 5, just before former president Michel Martelly left office, a transitional government was to rule the country for four months, until elections were held on April 24 and power transferred to the elected president on May 14.
But several delays and calls for the first round results to be verified have led to interim president Jocelerme Privert remaining in place long after the agreed time.
Privert told Reuters that he would stay in office unless Parliament agreed to remove him.
“We have dates and deadlines that changed for reasons beyond our control, but the fundamental mission is to organize the election as soon as possible,” he told the news agency.
“I am ready to comply with any decision made by Parliament in that regard. But if they are not able to make any decision, I cannot abandon my responsibilities.”
According to the Miami Herald, the new elections will take place on October 9, 2016 and if none of the candidates wins outright, a run-off vote would take place on January 8, 2017, with the final election results published 22 days later.
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