Statement of the Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network on Haiti elections and UN cholera by its president, Ezili DantòNovember 26, 2010
Who will be able to vote is not clear – over 1.3 million earthquake victims are displaced, many don’t know which polling place to go to, don’t have their IDs, and the country is in the middle of a cholera outbreak that the Center for Disease Control (CDC) says is non-Haitian and originated from South Asia. John Mekalanos, a cholera expert and the chairman of Harvard University’s microbiology department, said, “Evidence suggests Nepalese soldiers carried the disease when they arrived in early October following outbreaks in their homeland.”
The mourning among the population, legitimate disaffection with the U.N., coupled with the disastrous humanitarian situation and exclusion, creates an electoral environment sure to cause very low voter turnout. This will minimize the voice of most of the people while amplifying that of the Haitian oligarchy, mostly sustained by NGO and U.S. aid funds, living in the luxurious Petionville hills, who have their IDs and are not displaced.
Another issue is that whoever is elected will have so little power. The U.N., Bill Clinton and other foreigners through the Interim Haiti Reconstruction Commission (IHRC) largely run the country but are not accountable to the Haitian people. The senators and deputies “elected” mostly won’t have a say in Haiti’s reconstruction, and whoever the new president is from these exclusionary elections will only have a veto power over the acts of the anti-democratic, unelected IHRC. It’s hard to imagine a lone Haitian president finishing his term if he should actually veto a U.N./Bill Clinton/World Bank/Haiti oligarchy initiative made under the IHRC.
Nations like the U.S. have influence in Haiti largely on the basis of promises of aid, even though they have not delivered the bulk of that pledged aid. Similarly, big organizations raise money in the name of devastated Haitians and have money sitting in bank accounts earning interest almost a year after the earthquake, while Haitians remain homeless, living atop 98 percent of the rubble still not removed, or dying of cholera by the thousands as a result of their water being contaminated by U.N. troops.
Many of Haiti’s children have been out of school for 10 months, countless additionally traumatized from the brutal conditions in the tent camps, their parents having lost their jobs, everything, since the earthquake.
The November 28 sham elections are neither free nor fair, denies Haitians the right to self-determination, will not provide legitimate leaders respected by the people of Haiti and the insidious international community is only adding to its human right failures, indecencies and injustices in Haiti.
Forwarded by Ezili's Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network
Recommended HLLN Links:
Interview: On Nov.28 elections & UN cholera (22:28) - on Gorilla Radio, British Columbia
"Dollars for Every Haitian with Cholera. The UN and 42 NGOs are asking to be paid $607 dollars for every Haitian to be contaminated with cholera. That’s right. The exact numbers are 164 million dollars for 270,000 Haitians to be contaminated. Do the math. There is money in cholera." (Genocide in Haiti. Carelessness or Malice? by Dady Chery.)
"The U.S., standing virtually alone in the hemisphere and the world, refused to call the removal of President Zelaya a coup, and announced that Washington would recognize the results of last weekend's elections to succeed Zelaya even though they were held under military martial law. Hondurans who opposed the coup had no one to vote for, so of course, the oligarchy's candidate won in a very low turnout." (In Honduras and Haiti, the U.S. Rules by Proxy - “Wherever the U.S. has the power to thwart the democratic process, it does so.” By Glen Ford)
Disaster Capitalism in Haiti, New Orleans, Congo & Pakistan
Peacekeepers 'brought cholera to Haiti'
United Nations reluctantly agrees to investigate convincing claims Nepalese troops imported disease | By Nina Lakhan| The Independent, Nov. 21, 2010
"The accused UN cannot investigate itself" - Ezili Dantò, Oct 30, 2010
Haiti's case against the UN for importing cholera epidemic
Audio: Nov 1, 2010 Interview on London, England radio w/ Ezili Dantò of HLLN.
Recall that in 2009, I asked (Audio:) "What will we do if they poison the Artibonite River, that fertilizes Haiti's breadbasket?". See transcript at: Haiti's Riches: Interview with Ezili Dantò on Mining in Haiti, April 29, 2009 (See also- HAITI RICHES)
A chilling video testimony of brackish Red Cross water in Haiti- How the Red Cross ill-used your donations. For another compelling testimony on Red Cross delivering filthy water to Haiti victims ever since the earthquake, view also:How did the Red Cross spend $106 Million Dollars in Haiti: (Ezili Dantò's note: Amongst some of the testimonies that's not clearly translated in this most valuable video: a woman standing next to a small child repeating "no, no, no," points to a water drum with a "Red Cross" sign on it and says that even the water they give is not treated. She explains that she drinks it because she has no money to buy good drinkable water but suffers right now from a stomach ache from drinking the Red Cross' polluted water.)