By Vania Andre
Outrage was sparked among some, after Haiti’s presidential election preliminary results were announced on Nov. 5. The top two finishers in the first round was PHTK’s Jovenel Moise, with 32 percent of the vote, and LAPEH’s Jude Celestin with 25 percent of the vote, the Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) announced at a press conference.
“PHTK celebrates this first victory, which is proof that the people have understood our message of development,” Moise, who is backed by current President Michel Martelly said at press conference following the announcement. The agriculturist made his fortune by growing and exporting plantains in the North region of the country, pegging him “Neg Banana Nan” (The Banana Man).
However news of the results was not taken as well with other party candidates. jean-Hector Anacasis, coordinator of Celestin’s LAPEH party, accused on public radio that the results were fraudulent and stated their intention to contest them.
The third place candidate on the other hand, Moise Jean-Charles, was the first to denounce the results, calling his supporters to the streets. Jean-Charles claims the results is the work of a sham orchestrated by current President Martelly.
Demonstrations have already started popping up in Port-au-Prince, with one Pitit Dessalines protestor reportedly killed in Delmas 33, outside of the party’s headquarters.
“We will stay mobilized until the people’s vote is respected,” Jean-Charles stated on Twitter. Jean-Henry Céant, Eric Jean-Baptise, and Mario Andresol are among some of the other candidates who have voiced opposition to the results.
According to CEP, about 1.5 million votes were cast in the presidential elections. A little over 120,000 votes were deemed invalid, and about 22,000 votes were for “no candidate.” Voter turnout for this election was 26 percent, similar to that of the 2010 elections.
The results allegedly were not backed by all members of CEP, with one member, Jacceus Joseph, the human rights sector’s representative on the council, leaving his signature off of the published results.
Final results will be announced at the end of November.