Election results have been posted.
Though the results did not come on the same evening I wrote our previous post, they did come the following day. And miraculously, the streets of Port-au-Prince saw no major disruptions, none of the usual post-election protests and road blockades.
The runners-up for senators and deputies were announced, and, partly because there are 100+ political parties represented in these legislative elections, it seems there weren’t any "losers" with enough pull and influence to cause the oft-anticipated mayhem.
Another positive aspect of the results: the electoral council announced that the first-round elections will have to be redone in 25 constituencies due to enough recorded instances of fraud and violence. That's right; this means that the electoral council responded to the vast accounts of irregularities seen with elections, instead of writing them off as the international community did by saying elections went "well enough.'' (The majority of Haitians disagreed.) Since voting day, a slew of candidates have also been disqualified for being involved in the election-day violence. Several more have been ''sanctioned,'' but not disqualified.
The same concerns about the irregularities with elections remain. The electoral council continues to release its plans for how to improve the next round. On October 25, not only will second-round legislative seats be voted on, but local elections for mayors, kaseks and aseks will take place, in addition to first-round presidential elections!
Thank you for your concerns, interest, and prayers for Haiti.
Days of Prayer for the Displaced campaign via MCC
And speaking of prayer. Another issue that is just as relevant and pressing in Haiti today is the unfolding migration crises within and between Haiti and its neighboring country, the Dominican Republic. In other posts, we have discussed some of the recent policies in the D.R. that have stripped hundreds of thousands of people of their Dominican citizenship, an act that is illegal by international standards. In addition, migrant workers in the D.R. are facing uncertainty and deportations are becoming more frequent due to shifting immigration policies. Because of a major outflow of people from the D.R. to Haiti over the past two months - 66,000 people at least - tent camps are sprouting up along the Haitian side of the Haiti and D.R. border.
MCC is responding with material aid for vulnerable families. For the past few weeks, Ted and I have put a lot of time into planning for the Days of Prayer for the Displaced campaign. Through this campaign, we hope to encourage individuals and churches in the U.S. and Canada to spend time each day, for one week, lifting up a different aspect of this crisis in prayer.
It starts this Monday, August 31. If you are interested, please sign up through the links above, or look for our posts on social media starting on Monday. We are confident that prayer makes a difference, and we are excited to be sharing these materials with you guys.
Look for future posts on our recent trip to the border to visit a tent camp, or find photos and stories from our trip in the prayer guide.
This was re-posted from Katharine & Ted's personal blog, Stories to Tell.
Katharine is from San Diego, California and has served with MCC Haiti since July 2014 as Advocacy Coordinator and Policy Analyst. She studied History and Religious Studies at University of California Davis, then International Development at Eastern University. You can follow her Instagram on life in Haiti @katharineoswald, Haiti advocacy news on Facebook, and her personal blog, Stories to Tell.