elections haiti
Voters cast ballots in the October 2015 elections in Haiti. Photo by Garry Pierre-Pierre

As Haiti’s new leadership calls for timely elections, a group of United States lawmakers are urging caution. In a resolution that passed the Foreign Affairs Committee July 28, lawmakers in the House Haiti Caucus have urged the Biden administration and Haitian government to engage civil society before any elections are held. 

Former President Jovenel Moïse had planned to hold legislative elections and a constitutional referendum on Sept. 26. After Moïse’s murder earlier this month and days after officially stepping into his Prime Minister role on July 20, Ariel Henry promised timely elections, although he did not offer a date. 

“This resolution recognizes that, in the wake of Moïse’s horrible assassination, we must chart a new path forward when it comes to our Haiti policy,” said Rep. Andy Levin, co-chair of the Haiti Caucus, in an update on the resolution’s passage. “Most importantly, though, it makes clear that the Haitian people must be the ones to lead Haiti’s democracy into a new era. It supports their right to determine their own country’s future ‒ one of prosperity and lasting security.”

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Sam is a reporter for The Haitian Times and a 2020 Report for America fellow. He has covered Haiti and its diaspora since 2018. His work has also appeared in USA Today, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and Haiti Liberte. Sam can be reached at sam@haitiantimes.com or on Twitter @sambojarski.