[News] Haiti - Preval Declared President!

Anti-Imperialist News News at freedomarchives.org
Thu Feb 16 08:43:20 EST 2006

From: erzilidanto at yahoo.com

Préval declared winner in Haiti, CBC News|16 Feb 2006

Haiti's interim government and the electoral 
council have declared René Préval the winner of 
the presidential election, ending frantic 
negotiations to stop violent street 
demonstrations in the impoverished Caribbean nation.

René Préval. (AP file Photo)


"René Préval has been declared the winner with 51 
per cent," said Max Mathurin, the head of Haiti's 
electoral council, said early Thursday morning on the radio.

"We feel a huge satisfaction at having liberated 
the country from a truly difficult situation."

With 90 per cent of the ballots counted from the 
Feb. 7 vote, Préval had been slightly short of 
the 50 per cent margin needed to win.

But under the agreement, which was brokered by 
Brazil, 85,000 blank votes that had been cast 
were discounted, giving Préval a 51.15 per cent share of the vote.

The simple majority prevents a March 19 runoff election.

The vote triggered days of massive street 
protests, as tens of thousands of Préval's 
supporters marched through Port-Au-Prince, 
accusing his opponents of rigging the vote count.

On Wednesday, Préval called the election a 
"gigantic fraud" and vowed to contest the results 
as his supporters accused the country's rich 
elite, foreign governments and the United Nations 
of conspiring to keep him out of office.

Earlier in the week, local television broadcast 
footage of official voting bags, marked ballots 
and other election materials found smouldering in a garbage dump.

International observers had said the vote was 
legitimate, with no evidence of fraud.

Forwarded by the Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network

Préval, a former protegé of ousted Haitian 
president Jean-Bertrand Aristide, was president 
from 1996 to 2001. He will take office on March 29.

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