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Haiti Presidential Election Rescheduled For November

A man carries a presidential election poster past a destroyed kindergarten in Les Anglais, Haiti, on Monday.
Rebecca Blackwell
A man carries a presidential election poster past a destroyed kindergarten in Les Anglais, Haiti, on Monday.

Haiti will hold the first round of its long-delayed presidential election on November 20, reports Reuters. The country's electoral council postponed the vote after Hurricane Matthew devastated the country last week.

At least 500 people in Haiti died in the storm.

Haiti's electoral council president Leopold Berlanger said, despite the storm damage, large portions of the population should be able to vote, according to Reuters.

"We want to be able to organize elections in all regions for all citizens, especially at the presidential level," Berlanger told a news conference on Friday, according to the wire service. He said a second round runoff vote was scheduled for Jan. 29.

As the Two-Way has reported, Haiti's presidential election has been postponed multiple times in the last year, and the country's interim president, Jocelerme Privert, has already outstayed his mandate to be in office.

Here is a brief history of this year's election delays in Haiti, as we reported when last week's vote delay was announced:

"According to the U.N., a first-round vote for president was held on Oct. 25, 2015. The U.S. spent $33 million to support the election, according to Kenneth Marten, the State Department's special coordinator for Haiti.


"The second-round vote should have been held on Dec. 27, 2015, but it was delayed until January 2016, according to the U.N. The January election never happened... and on Feb. 7 the term of Haiti's president at the time, Michel Martelly, ended without an elected successor in place. The then-president of Haiti's Senate, Jocelerme Privert, took over as interim president.


"Elections were rescheduled for Apr. 24. That day came and went without a vote."

The vote had been rescheduled for Oct. 9, but Hurricane Matthew hit the island nation on Oct. 4.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Rebecca Hersher (she/her) is a reporter on NPR's Science Desk, where she reports on outbreaks, natural disasters, and environmental and health research. Since coming to NPR in 2011, she has covered the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, embedded with the Afghan army after the American combat mission ended, and reported on floods and hurricanes in the U.S. She's also reported on research about puppies. Before her work on the Science Desk, she was a producer for NPR's Weekend All Things Considered in Los Angeles.