PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Haiti has set a date for delayed legislative elections that have been a source of increasing political friction while scheduling its presidential election for later this year.
The election for all members of the Senate and Chamber of Deputies will be Aug. 9, according to an announcement late Wednesday by Mosler Georges, executive director of the Provisional Electoral Council.
A presidential election will be Oct. 25, with a runoff on Dec. 27 if no candidate gets more than 50 percent of the vote. Elections for local offices will also be held on Oct. 25. The dates are considered tentative until they are confirmed by being published in the government’s official gazette.
President Michel Martelly cannot run for re-election because the Constitution bars consecutive terms.
Haiti has been under pressure by the U.N. and the U.S. government to schedule the legislative elections. They were supposed to be held in 2011 but the enabling legislation was blocked by a handful of opposition senators in a standoff with Martelly. Opponents of the president have been holding regular protests in the capital, calling on him to resign.
The terms of all sitting lawmakers expired in January and the president has been ruling by decree since then with an appointed prime minister and Cabinet.