Ambassador of Haiti defends the legitimacy of Moise government

Smith Agustín / Acento

Haiti Ambassador Smith Augustin called for governments to support the presidency of Jovenel Moise in Haiti. He said Haiti’s people can express themselves through the referendum set for April, national elections scheduled for September, and the handing over of power on 7 February 2022.

Through a statement, Ambassador Smith notes that Haiti’s Embassy in the Dominican Republic learned with sadness and astonishment that a coup d’état attempted to overthrow President Jovenel Moïse, democratically elected for five years and who began his administration on 7 February 2017.

An interim President has been named in Haiti despite the fact that a democratic electoral calendar has been published and that the world’s major political organizations, including the United Nations (UN), the Organization of American States (OAS) and the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie (OIF), are officially supporting the democratic process of political change in Haiti, explained the press release from the Haitian Embassy.

“In the face of this grave situation, Haiti’s friendly countries, especially its neighbors and the leaders of the international community, must not be fooled or tolerate these misdirections. To stand by the Haitian people is to take with them the path of democratic modernity and the rule of law that leads them away from the old methods of the past such as coups d’état and the pedagogy of violence and lies to gain access to power. Too many times we have done it in the past, too many times we have delayed the advent of democracy in our country”, expresses the statement from the Embassy of Haiti.

However, Augustin points out that the presidential term is unequivocally five years and will end on 7 February 2022 in accordance with Article 134.1 of the 1987 Constitution. He states that the Constitution is as clear as the circumstances that brought President Jovenel Moïse to power at the end of the first round of the 20 November 2016 election, which he won with 55.67% of the vote.

He says it is the opposition that has created the confusion. He explained that in the framework of the political dialogues of 2019 and 2020, President Moïse was asked to agree to “shorten his mandate by one year” and leave in February 2021 to solve the political crisis of the moment. The Haitian ambassador says that now there is talk of Moise having an “end of mandate in 2021 when 2017 + 5= 2022.

Ambassador Augustin says that on 7 February 2021, when the Haitian population remained at home confined and terrorized by threats of violence, the political opposition attempted to deceive the highest elites of public power. It recounts what happened as: “Among other things, it embarrassed, weakened and disgraced the judiciary and the national police: Judge IvickelDabrésil of the Court of Cassation and the inspector general of the PNH, Dr. Marie Louise Gauthier, and more than twenty others were arrested for having been caught red-handed in an obviously childish coup attempt; another Supreme Court judge, Me Mécène Jean-Louis, the court’s senior, was manipulated into agreeing to play a presidential farce that quickly made everyone laugh at him. Fortunately, to safeguard the prestige of the institution, the president of the Court, Mr. René Sylvestre, quickly disassociated himself, in a note made public, from his two vilely politicized colleagues.”

Augustin stated: “Democracy is being put to the test in Haiti now, but it must succeed so that a democratically-elected president succeeds President Moïse in 2022. Let us contribute to this for the sake of the Haitian people and the political stability that we must all guarantee and promote for the peace and social and economic progress of the region.”

The worsening of the political crisis in Haiti has created a tense situation at the border, with controls stepped up.

Read more in Spanish:
El Caribe
Haiti Libre

Listin Diario

9 February 2021