PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Tuesday November 29, 2016 – Preliminary results show a second round in Haiti’s presidential elections won’t be necessary, after the winner in the first round of elections – banana exporter Jovenel Moïse – took more than 50 per cent of the vote.
Haiti’s Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) reported that Moïse took 55.67 per cent of the vote in the November 20 election, far ahead of his closest rival Jude Celestin who won 19.52 per cent of the vote, followed by Jean-Charles Moïse with 11.04 per cent and Maryse Narcisse with 8.99 per cent.
With Moïse’s simple majority, a planned January runoff will be avoided once the losing candidates do not contest the results.
Moïse, 48, who runs a banana export company that he sees as a model for rural development, also won the first round in the October 2015 elections that was scrapped following allegations of widespread fraud. His margin, however, was not as large.
Violent clashes marked the wait for these latest election results. The protests and unrest were led by supporters of former president Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s Fanmi Lavalas Party, which claimed victory for its candidate, Narcisse, soon after the election.
Interim president Jocelerme Privert had appealed for calm ahead of the announcement, saying that “resorting to acts of violence can only spoil the fruits of the beautiful day we had on November 20”.
Privert was appointed by parliament in February after the incumbent, Michel Martelly, stepped down at the end of his term with no new president in place. Moïse was President Martelly’s chosen successor.