Recent Feature Articles

By Marie Laurette Numa & Yves Pierre-Louis, Haiti Liberté, June 14, 2016

The Feb. 5, 2016 Accord made between then President Michel Martelly and Senate president Jocelerme Privert went into effect on Feb. 14 and was due to expire on Jun. 14, 2016.

The agreement had foreseen that "the mandate of the temporary President is up to 120 days from the date of installation. Where appropriate, the National Assembly shall take any necessary measures." In other words, a joint session of Haiti’s upper and lower houses (i.e. National Assembly) could extend the term of the president or oust him.

Already, Privert had offered his interpretation of the agreement, saying: "As long as the elections are not conducted, the Feb. 5 Accord retains all its validity." New elections are scheduled to start in October 2016 and finish in January 2017.

By Joe Emersberger, teleSUR, June 6, 2016

Despite the resurgence of the U.S.-backed right wing in Latin America, Luis Almagro’s attempt to have the OAS Democratic Charter applied against Venezuela’s government was a complete flop. The OAS bureaucracy is heavily funded and in other ways influenced by Washington and has long been used as a weapon against governments it doesn’t like. In the twenty first century, OAS member states have become independent enough to make that bureaucracy less dangerous, but it has still done considerable damage.

The role that OAS officials have played in Haiti is especially ugly. Almagro has not uttered a word of outrage against recent U.S. efforts to force Haitians to accept fraud ridden elections that the OAS helped run – quite a contrast with the way he belligerently and absurdly impugned Venezuela’s electoral process last year before legislative elections which were won by the opposition. Perhaps the most outrageous thing Almagro has ever done was demand OAS monitoring of Venezuela’s elections. It was like demanding that the Mafia supervise police.

By Yves Pierre-Louis, Haiti Liberté, June 8, 2016

On Mon. Jun. 6, Haiti’s Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) announced an electoral schedule for the next eight months, culminating in the inauguration of a new president on Feb. 7, 2017.

Despite opposition from Washington and former President Michel Martelly’s Haitian Bald Headed Party (PHTK), the CEP fully recognized and implemented the findings and recommendations announced on May 30 by Haiti’s Independent Commission of Electoral Evaluation and Verification (CIEVE).

By The Lancet, June 11, 2016

Dear Mr. Ban Ki-moon,

We have greatly admired your leadership as Secretary-General of the UN. Over your 10 years heading the world's most important international organisation, you have played an exemplary part in strengthening the global health agenda—championing awareness of women's and children's health, global warming, and humanitarianism. But there is one issue that concerns us deeply.

In 2010, UN soldiers from Nepal were deployed to help after Haiti's devastating earthquake and cholera contaminated sewage was discarded from their camp into the country's major river. This triggered the largest cholera outbreak in the world, leaving more than 30 000 Haitians dead and more than 2 million affected.

6 years later a cholera epidemic still rages—14 000 new cases and 150 deaths are reported this year alone. The UN has yet to accept responsibility for introducing cholera into Haiti, despite two investigations establishing these facts.

By Center for Economic & Policy Research (CEPR), June 7, 2016

Haiti’s electoral council announced yesterday that new first-round presidential elections would be held in October after a commission found widespread fraud and irregularities in the previous vote. The prospect of the new vote — to be held alongside dozens of parliamentary seats still up for grabs, has raised questions about how it could be funded. The previous elections — determined to be too marred by fraud and violence to count — cost upward of $100 million, with the bulk of the funding coming from international donors.

But now, donors are balking. Last week the State Department’s Haiti Special Coordinator Ken Merten said that if elections are redone “from scratch” than it would put U.S. assistance in jeopardy. It “could also call into question whether the U.S. will be able to continue to support financially Haiti’s electoral process,” Merten added.

Nadia Kanji interviews Nikolas Barry-Shaw, REAL News, JUne 3, 2016

Hillary Clinton's responsibility for creating the ongoing political crisis in Haiti has not received sufficient attention during the 2016 presidential campaign, says Nikolas Barry-Shaw of the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti. Clinton's involvement in Haiti began before the 2010 earthquake, and the country soon became the "centerpiece" of State Department policy under her leadership.

By Kim Ives, Haiti Liberté, June 1, 2016

The moment of truth had arrived. At least, some of the truth.

On the evening of May 30, Haiti’s Independent Commission of Electoral Evaluation and Verification (CIEVE) released its long-awaited report on the controversial Washington-supported elections of Aug. 9 and Oct. 25, 2015.

The bombshell report found that “the electoral process was marred by serious irregularities, grave inconsistencies, and massive fraud.” Only 9% of the votes in its sampling were found to be valid.

The five-member CIEVE, which reviewed 3,235 voter tallies (procès verbal) or 25% of the 12,939 total, recommended that October’s presidential first-round “restart from zero.”

By Ed Pilkington, The Guardian, June 1, 2016

The United Nations is showing the first signs of compromise over the Haiti cholera epidemic, after more than five years in which it has consistently refused to accept responsibility for a disaster that has claimed tens of thousands of lives.

Groups working with Haitian victims have greeted the apparent shift in the UN’s position as a potential breakthrough in a crisis that has devastated one of the poorest countries in the world and sapped the credibility of the very organization that was supposed to be helping it.

By Nikolas Barry-Shaw, Jacobin Magazine, May 27, 2016

Is Hillary Clinton’s presidential bid suffocating democracy in Haiti? A growing number of informed observers, both in Haiti and in the United States, think so. They contend that the former secretary of state’s political ambitions are having a profound effect on the Haitian electoral process.

The island’s deeply flawed elections — held last August and October, backed by over $33 million in US funding — triggered massive political unrest this past January.

Coming on the heels of Michel Martelly’s disastrous presidency, the elections spotlight how badly Clinton’s attempts as secretary of state to direct Haitian politics have backfired. The unrest caused the final round of balloting to be suspended and sent the US State Department into damage-control mode.

The department’s overriding — though unofficial — concern over the past year has been to finish Haiti’s elections before the US general election campaign begins in earnest this summer. It desperately wants to keep the results of Clinton’s involvement in Haiti out of the media glare.

By Dady Chery, News Junkie Post, May 20, 2016

It is Haiti’s good luck and surely the Clintons’ misfortune, that Charles Ortel, one of the world’s finest financial analysts, has got the Clinton Foundation in his sights. Mr. Ortel is a graduate of the Harvard Business School with decades of Wall Street experience. He is currently a private investor. He began to release on his website and from his Twitter account (@charlesortel), in early May 2016, a series of detailed reports that are damning to the Clintons and their various supposed charitable initiatives.

The Clintons are powerful, and they have squirmed their way out of many tight spots before, but what makes this particular case worthy of our utmost attention is that Ortel is not only outstanding at what he does, but also fearless and dogged in his pursuit of perceived financial malfeasance. If his analysis of General Electric, which is far more complex than the Clinton charities, successfully pegged GE as being overvalued before its stock plummeted in 2008, then we must hear out his case against the Clinton Foundation. I caught up with him earlier this week, and he graciously agreed to an interview.