News from Haiti

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

“A Victory for Democracy in Haiti” (Charles Henri Baker)

Port-au-Prince, February 7, 2006. Charles Henri Baker, Independent candidate for President of Haiti, released the following statement from his Port-au-Prince headquarters—

“Today’s national elections in Haiti represent a great victory for democracy and the people in Haiti. It has been six long years since our people have had an opportunity to cast their vote and to express their hopes for Haiti’s future. But, today, millions of Haitians proudly went to the polls to make their voices heard about the direction we should take as a Nation. North, South, East and West—Haitians went to the vote before the light of day, and waited for hours to express their will.

Yes, there were problems with this election and we are not proud of them. We have heard reports of voter intimidation and threats, sometimes at the barrel of a gun. We have received reports of disorganization, mismanagement and incompetence at some polling stations. We will provide our reports of the irregularities to the appropriate authorities.

Yet, we have made our voices heard. I am proud of the courage and strength of our people, so clearly seen today during this experiment in democracy. In spite of all the challenges that face our people, in spite of the efforts of the anti-democratic groups, the people of Haiti have stood up and shown the world that we are a great Nation that believes in freedom, democracy and the rule of the law.

Congratulations, people of Haiti. Together, we have taken the first steps to a better future.”