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Haiti - Elections : Towards a Low Turnout...
27/01/2017 08:58:32

Haiti - Elections : Towards a Low Turnout...
As part of the senatorial and local elections, Sunday 29 January, the Observatory Citizen for the Institutionalization of Democracy (OCID) believed necessary to a few days of the election, to evaluate the pre-election environment especially in regard to candidates in local elections.

In order to take stock of the situation, the OCID investigators questioned (on 23 and 24 January) 190 candidates to the local elections (96 for CASEC, 41 for ASEC, 53 for city delegate) enrolled under the banner of 39 political parties and groups: 39 in the West, 32 in the North, 25 in the Centre, 25 in the Southeast, 21 in the Artibonite, 14 in the Northeast, 10 in the North-West, 9 in Grande-Anse, 9 in the South and 7 in the Nippes.

Concerning the level of interest shown by the population in the local elections, 41.8% of the candidates interviewed said that citizens had little or no interest in the elections. According to the respondents, this disaffection of a very large segment of the population can be explained by several factors: the deficiencies of the awareness campaign (33.3%), the lack of importance given to local elections (32%), the lack of financial resources available to candidates to campaign (29.4%) and lack of confidence in elected officials (5.1%).

Moreover, 61.2% of the 190 candidates admit that the population they are campaigning with does not understand the role of local elected officials at all. Only 3.6% think it understands a little and 35% that it has a good understanding of the responsibilities of the ASECs, CASECs and city delegates. Finally, the concerns expressed by the candidates questioned relate to the following points : the risk of a low turnout in the elections (67% of them), insecurity during the election day (22.7%) and electoral fraud (5.2%).

The OCID would not be surprised "to see a participation rate lower than the 23% recorded in November 2016". However, OCID believes that it is not too late to continue and intensify the motivation / awareness campaign among the electorate and recommends that the CEP make a special effort to communicate to voters within the next few hours.

HL/ HaitiLibre

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