[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

6254: REUTERS FWD - Haiti opposition to form alternative government (fwd)

From: Racine125@aol.com

Haiti opposition to form alternative government

By Trenton Daniel

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Dec 15 (Reuters) - Haiti's opposition political 
parties said on Friday they will work to create an alternative government 
before President-elect Jean-Bertrand Aristide takes over in February. 

The Democratic Convergence alliance said it soon will form a provisional 
government to organize elections in which an alternative, "legitimate" 
government will be chosen. 

"We know on Feb. 7, Aristide will try to be inaugurated, but we will form a 
national, political government before that," Convergence member Jose Jacques 
Nicolas said, adding that Aristide's party, the Lavalas Family, would be 
invited to participate. 

Senate President Yvon Neptune, a spokesman for Lavalas Family, rejected the 
Convergence statement, saying the opposition should respect the democratic 

The major opposition parties in the Caribbean nation of 7.8 million people 
boycotted the presidential election in November, which Aristide won with more 
than 90 percent of the popular vote. 

Opposition politicians refused to participate in protest at tainted 
parliamentary elections in May and called the presidential election a sham. 

The poorest country in the Americas, Haiti is battling to emerge from decades 
of dictatorship and military rule and establish a stable democracy. 
Opposition leaders accuse Aristide, whose party dominates parliament, of 
setting up his own dictatorship. 


Haiti's key international allies, who have traditionally acted as election 
observers, also criticized the vote after calling on the government to 
rectify problems with the May election. 

Aristide won the Nov. 26 election with 92 percent of the vote. He was 
challenged by six unknown candidates who did not campaign due to preelection 

In the May elections, international monitors reported that elections 
officials miscalculated the winning percentages of 10 senate candidates from 
Lavalas Family, giving them outright victories when they should have gone 
into runoffs. 

Haitian authorities refused to reexamine the results, prompting the United 
States, Canada and the European Union to withdraw observers and support for 
the presidential vote. 

Aristide was Haiti's first democratically elected leader, swept to power a 
decade ago by a grass-roots movement that toppled the dictatorship of 
Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier. But seven months into his term, he was 
ousted in a violent military coup and went into exile. 

Three years later a U.S.-led multinational force restored Aristide to power. 
Constitutionally barred from running for a second consecutive term, he 
relinquished power in 1996 to his protege, Rene Preval. 

Democratic Convergence has criticized the statement by elections officials 
that 60.5 percent of Haiti's four million eligible voters turned out for the 
presidential vote. Opposition leaders estimated the turnout at under 5 

The Caribbean Community (Caricom), an independent observer, put turnout at 
between 15 and 20 percent. 

Lavalas Family holds all but one seat in the 27-seat Senate, and more than 80 
percent of the seats in the Chamber of Deputies, the lower house, and nearly 
all the mayoralties and town councils nationwide. 

17:49 12-15-00

Copyright 2000 Reuters Limited.