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  • Writer's pictureGuyler C Delva

Haiti's Top Priorities: Security, Then Elections, PM insists





- On Flag Day, Haiti's PM Ariel Henry Calls For Unity Among Haitians


By Joseph Guyler C. Delva

Thursday  May 18, 2023


PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (HCNN)- Haitian Prime Minister has announced plans to engage Haiti in an irreversible process toward holding elections in the forseable future in the impoverished Caribbean country where many remain skeptical about such goals, raising challenging security issues and the dreadful political polarization among actors.


Ariel Henry says Haiti's government will move up a gear in the preparation of a process which should culminate in the holding of general elections to allow for the appointment of a new president and to help revive democratic institutions, now defunct.


"What is important today is to get together to facilitate the holding of good elections", Henry stated during an address on Thursday in the city of Cap-Haitien, nearly 200 kms north of Port-au-Prince.


PM Henry said his government won't have time to address a series of structural problems during the short lapse of time that remains for his government to continue to ensure the reins of power.


"The wind of division, of insecurity, the machine of death will have to stop. We are working towards the establishment of peace, towards organizing elections," insisted Henry deploring that different ongoing maneuvers aimed at diverting people's attention. "But we're moving forward."

"If we want to succeed, division, violence cannot be part of our strategy, kidnapping and killing people can't be part of it," said Henry adding that "to takcle the countries' problems, Haiti needs peace and stability."


The Haitian official mentions the fact that the country urgently needs to resume the normal functioning of its democratic institutions, and for that purpose "elections should be held."


PM ADMITS SECURITY IS A PREREQUISITE, CARICOM


PM Henry acknowledged that good elections can't be organized without security being priorly guaranteed all over the country.


"We know there can't be good elections witout security being guaranteed all over the country," said Henry adding he was working on the issue with different other relevant actors.


The Haitian Prime minister announces for next week the holding of a Security Forum to discuss security and pre-electoral issues.


Observers from the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), according to Henry, will attend the meeting as well as other representatives from political parties, from the business sector and civil society groups.

The session will be jointly organized by the government and the High Council of Transition (HCT)

, another entity of the executive branch, which took the initiative.


Henry aknowledged that there are works that were supposed to be done, which were not well carried out or which had simply failed to be done.

"We are ready to correct our faults. We are working for a just cause. We are working to allow all Haitians to recover their full freedom."


He said the country's security forces have intensified their efforts. "Step by step, they are restoring order. We should expect good results."


Ariel Henry calls on Haitians to divorce political practices based on mistrust. We need to put our hands together to save Haiti. "And I'm ready", Henry concluded.


Haitian authorities and the security forces have stepped up efforts to combat criminal gangs over the past week. But pundits still believe that only a robust multinational military force - as the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, has repeatedly requested, would be capable of getting rid of those heavily armed gangs.


Reporting by Joseph Guyler C. Delva

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