Haiti in 2006 was a country of great contrasts. On the one hand, it was the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and ranked 145th out of 177 countries on the United Nations Human Development Index. Over 80% of its population lived below the poverty line and unemployment was rampant. The country faced a severe deforestation crisis, with more than 95% of its forests gone. In addition, Haiti’s infrastructure was crumbling and access to basic services such as electricity, clean water and sanitation were limited.
According to constructmaterials, Haiti had multiple sources of potential for economic growth and development. Its vibrant culture was a major tourist attraction, drawing visitors from around the world to experience its unique blend of African, French and Caribbean influences. Its art scene had also been growing steadily since 2004 when it hosted an international biennial art exhibition for contemporary Haitian art. In addition, Haiti’s agricultural sector had significant potential for growth as it produced sugarcane, coffee and cocoa for export markets as well as staples such as maize and beans for domestic consumption. This sector could have provided employment opportunities to many Haitians if given appropriate investment from government or private entities.
Haiti. The first round of Haiti’s presidential election on February 7 was surrounded as expected by major practical difficulties and political attacks. René Préval, leader of the Lespwa Party (“Hope”), claimed that a widespread election fraud had sabotaged his victory. However, the electoral authority made sure that the voting was done, which ultimately gave Préval the victory. His rival Leslie Manigat, who received 12% of the vote, first equated the action with a coup that prevented him from meeting Préval in a second round, but later accepted the election result. Foreign diplomats, especially Chilean and Brazilian, helped resolve a situation that threatened to degenerate into new political chaos in unstable Haiti. However, the confusion surrounding the election results delayed Préval’s installation as president for a month and a half.
According to CountryAAH, major public holidays in Haiti include Independence Day (January 1) and New Year (January 1). The hopes for political stability were high after the long postponed elections were held. In early July, however, the capital Port-au-Prince was shaken by a massacre of 21 people believed to have been carried out by the militia group Lamé Ti Cuff (LTM) to destabilize the government of Préval. Later, the same month, the exiled President Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s former Prime Minister Yvon Neptune, who was jailed for two years, was released later that month.
In September 2013, the Senate voted to sue Prime Minister Lamothe for a court of justice for share in the death of Judge Jean Serge Joseph in July. In December 2014, he resigned from the prime minister post. Two days earlier, a parliamentary commission had recommended that both Lamothe, the president of the Supreme Court and the chairman of the state electoral council be removed from their post to soften the conflict between Martelli’s government and the opposition.
Prime Minister Lamothe was immediately replaced by Florence Duperval Guillaume, and Martelly subsequently appointed Evans Paul for deployment in January 2015.
The UN MINUSTAH mission in Haiti is highly unpopular in population due to its abuse. During demonstrations organized by earthquake victims in December 2014, 2 Haitians were injured and 1 killed when MINUSTAH soldiers opened fire on the demonstration. There are countless reports of sexual assault and MINUSTAH soldiers have been previously punished for the rape of a 14-year-old Haitian boy.
In January 2015, Parliament dissolved as its term expired. Four days later, thousands of protesters in Port Au Prince’s streets demanded the president’s departure. Police used tear gas and water cannons against the protesters. The president urged the protesters to stay calm and declared that he would have an agreement in place with the opposition within the next 48 hours to form a unity government. At the same time, a day was set in March for both presidential and parliamentary elections.
However, the election was postponed and complicated by elections in several rounds to the Senate, the Chamber of Deputies and the presidential office. In August and October, the 1st and 2nd rounds of the parliamentary elections were held. The largest party in the Chamber of Deputies was Parti Haïtien Tèt Kale (PHTK), which got 26 seats out of 92. The second largest was Verité, who got 13 seats.
The social and health situation in the country became even worse during 2015. The number of cholera cases tripled in the first 6 months of 2015 compared to the previous year. The country’s northwest and southwest were affected by prolonged drought. The situation was on the brink of famine. Tens of thousands of Haitians fled the Dominican Republic (PRD) in June after the PRD announced mass deportation of Haitians. Finally, in 2010, 60,000 victims of the 2010 earthquake were still living in temporary camps under miserable conditions.
In October, the first round of the presidential election was conducted. PHTK’s Jovenel Moïse got 32.8% of the vote, while Lapeh’s Jude Célestin got 25.3%. A total of 70 candidates ran for the election. Following the announcement of the election results, Célestin and the following 5 candidates criticized the election for being so marked by fraud that it was invalid. Lapeh and a host of other parties then staged demonstrations in protest of the election. Demonstrations that quickly degenerated violently and were met by police resentment. Still, the second round of elections was scheduled for implementation in December, but 5 days before the Supreme Election Commission postponed it indefinitely. Nevertheless, President Martelly tried several times in January 2016 to make the election. In February, his term expired and parliament elected Jocelerme Privert as acting president instead. In May, Privert set up a commission to investigate the legitimacy of the election. At the end of the month, it released a report showing extensive and systematic fraud. Privert then recommended that the first round of elections should go all the way. Now, the US intervened, which had financed the first round with $ 33 million. US $, declaring that the US would not finance the implementation of a new first round, but that it should go directly to the second round. But this did not allow the United States to dictate. The election was then postponed several times during 2016.