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#2771: FROM CIP/ECOSOF (fwd)

From: Max Blanchet <MaxBlanchet@worldnet.att.net>

Visit the CIP site for a more complete analysis

ECOSOF: What the Poll Reveals

The results of this work allow one to reach certain conclusions which
cast new light on the political environment in Haiti. They can variously 
confirm, refute, improve, update or confound the existing data on the
political forces in Haiti. The results show:

1. The presence of a multitude of political organizations on the ground. 
Our polling firm has identified nineteen active political parties, of
which it was able to get the collaboration of only seven. These seven
are the most visible and widespread around the country. Information
gathered from the nine departments indicates some thirty organizations 
that could be considered political parties. Among these are five -- the 
Lavalas Family, OPL, Espace de Concertation, Mochrena, and the PLB --
which have a national presence. Only two can claim an awareness and
popularity among the local population: OPL and the Lavalas Family.
However, Mochrena is very aggressive and will be a party with which one 
must reckon because of its national presence and religious base.

2. Another finding: the structure and presence of the parties does not 
guarantee their control of parliament. The study revealed that it is the 
candidates who choose the parties and not the reverse. The lower chamber 
will be composed of deputies who are genuinely popular in their own
right and who get nominated by the political party that can most boost 
their political chances or with which they feel a certain ideological

3. From this it appears that the different parties to be represented in 
the lower chamber have slight chance of gaining an absolute, decisive
majority. At the same time, it is highly likely that the chamber will be 
divided between the Lavalas Family and OPL with the presence of one or 
two independents and a couple of representatives of the Espace de
Concertation; all this on the basis of the November 1999 poll which
other polls will have to confirm.

4. In the lower chamber, if the elections were held in November 1999
there would be serious competition. For those fifty-one legislative
districts (circonscriptions) for which information is sufficient the
poll found that the Lavalas Family was in a good position to take
twenty-one, OPL nine, Espace, Mochrena and PLB three each; ESCANP, MRN, and RDNP one each. If these indications are borne out, one can expect a divided chamber in the manner of the Forty-Sixth Legislature. The
minority parties would then be true power brokers in that they would
have the power to negotiate a majority.

5) The poll produced interesting results in two other aspects:

a. From the analysis of the responses it is clear that one of the
principal reasons for their choices is the reputation of the candidates. 
It is in first place in five departments and second in the other four. 
It has the best two scores on the table with 68.01 percent of the voters 
of the Grande Anse and 59.74 percent of those in the Department of the 
South saying they chose on the basis of reputation.

b. The population is clear on the major problems which concern it and
prioritizes them. The most important is insecurity, followed by the high 
cost of living, hunger, economic problems, and the political situation. 
The respondents distinguish between economic problems and hunger.