OAS electoral mission concerned about political impasse in Haiti

The Organization of American States (OAS) says its Electoral Observation Mission (EOM) has expressed concern about the current political impasse ahead of Sunday´s second round of elections in Haiti.

“The Mission urges all Haitian political players to engage in dialogue and negotiations to find a meaningful solution to this impasse,” said the OAS in a statement on Wednesday.

Following the recommendations of the Commission created to improve the electoral process, the OAS noted that “important measures were taken.

“Of greatest significance was the decision to separate the dates of the presidential polls from the local ones, a step that resulted in a drastic reduction in the number of party representatives , which has been generally seen as one of the main sources of irregularities,” it said.

However, the OAS said “these measures have not achieved the intended level of confidence that they originally pursued.

“The Mission underscores that according to article 3 of the Inter-American Democratic Charter, access to power should be in accordance with the rule of law and the holding of periodic, free and fair elections, based on secret balloting and universal suffrage,” the OAS said.

“The OAS/EOM firmly condemns any act of violence, in particular those directed against institutions in charge of the electoral process,” the statement said.

Political tension has been mounting in Haiti  – on Monday, opposition supporters demanded the formation of an interim government and are calling for the suspension of Sunday’s vote.

President Michel Martelly who has been prevented by the Constitution from seeking a third consecutive term in office, has denied that the vote is being rigged in support of his party’s candidate, Jovenel Moise.

The Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) has already condemned the acts of violence and has vowed to go ahead with Sunday’s poll that has the backing of the international community.

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