News from Haiti

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Widespread Reports of Voter Intimidation, Unrest and Mismanagement (Charles Henri Baker)

Port-au-Prince, February 7, 2006. Staff at the Baker campaign headquarters are receiving many reports of voter intimidation and election mismanagement throughout the country. Witnesses at numerous polling areas are reporting that many voters are being forced to vote for Lespwa candidates, the party of Rene Preval. Voters are reporting that voting lists at the polling precincts are incomplete, and in some cases, non-existent. At some polling place, voters have been told that they could not vote where they were assigned and are being sent to other polling stations far away. Some polling places have been closed completely because of disorganization. There have been reports of chaotic popular demonstrations in parts of Port-au-Prince; and gunfire and the use of tear gas in different parts of the country. In some cases, campaign monitoring personnel dispatched by the Baker campaign have not been allowed to take up their posts. According to some reports, many voters, because of intimidation and insecurity have gone home without voting. Details to follow.