In his letter of resignation, in September, the American special envoy for Haiti Daniel Foote said in particular that Haitians must have
the possibility of forging their own path, without international influence and without certain candidates for power being favored.
Mr. Foote’s criticisms join those of the Commission for a Haitian Solution to the Crisis, which has been holding hearings in Haiti since the beginning of the year, and in which representatives of Haitian political parties, farmers’ groups, participate. from business, unions, churches, voodoo leaders and women’s groups, as well as a handful of respected independent voices and three representatives of the Haitian diaspora – one for Canada, one for the United States and one for France.
What we are saying, and what people in the streets have been saying for more than three years, is that Haiti is a sovereign country, comments Monique Clesca, Haitian activist who is part of the commission. We may have weak institutions. We can have disputes with our neighbors. But we are a sovereign country and it is we who must decide our present and our future.
And what we want is for the Core Group to stay out of our business, she adds.
The Core Group, a group of foreign diplomats, was also denounced by Daniel Foote, who insisted that the group had chosen the current prime minister and interim president Ariel Henry two weeks after initially supporting Claude Joseph . The latter had succeeded President Jovenel Moise, assassinated in July.
The inordinate pride that makes us believe we should pick the winner – once again – is awesome, he wrote.
In the last few years what we have seen is Canada, the United States and France really taking control of the country, of the political agenda of the country., adds for his part the sociologist of Haitian origin Frédéric Boisrond, of McGill University.
On July 17, the Core Group had
called for the formation of a consensual and inclusive governmentencouraging
strongly Ariel Henry to form a government. Mr. Henry became Prime Minister three days later.
The embassies try to impose a so-called stability to which corruption and impunity are grafted. We are where we are because of the support provided [à certains politiciens] by the Core Group, which is led by the United States, and in which Canada plays a leading role, believes Monique Clesca.
This stability claimed by the group of diplomats does not even exist, continues Ms. Clesca, since street gangs control entire neighborhoods of the country and the Haitian government is accused by many of arming them and giving them power.
[L’ancien président] Michel Martelly has never organized a single election in five years. He was supported by the Core Group. Jovenel Moise has never organized a single election in almost five years, but the Core Group has supported him. When he sank into dictatorship, the Core Group supported him. We say the Core Group has no credibility to tell us what to do, insists Mrs. Clesca.
The Commission for a Haitian Solution to the Crisis plans to set up a National Transitional Council whose task will be to collect candidates for the positions of President and Prime Minister, analyze them and choose the leaders of the transition.
The first obstacle they will encounter are the people who are really in power, notes Frédéric Boisrond. I don’t believe the people in power are ready to step back and let other people take power.
The lack of economic opportunities is also a major obstacle to the advent of democracy, he says.
You can’t make a democracy work if you don’t make the economy work, and that’s the biggest challenge the commission faces right now., he believes.
From a text by Evan Dyer, CBC News