Helen Lime, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Haiti and Head of the United Nations Integrated Office in the country, also expressed deep concern about the “continually increasing polarization in Haitian politics” and the increasing tendency by some actors to resort to violence.
Referring to Haiti’s efforts to prepare for its slate of elections later in 2021, including at the presidential level, Ms. La Lime said conditions in the country had worsened in recent weeks.
back in COVID-19 The cases prompted the authorities to declare a new health emergency, and thus led the Provisional Electoral Council to postpone the proposed constitutional referendum, scheduled for the end of June.
Recent months have also witnessed several disturbing security incidents and serious human rights violations committed by gangs against civilians.
On the other hand, she said, the escalation of gang violence has caused the displacement of hundreds of families in several poor neighborhoods in Port-au-Prince, and deepened the sense of insecurity that pervades Haitian society.
Despite the many mediation efforts led by Haiti, the “deep-rooted political crisis that has gripped the country for the greater part of the past four years shows no sign of abating” and the rhetoric used by some political leaders is getting increasingly intense.
Controversy over constitutional changes
Among other major political challenges, Ms. La Lyme cited the ongoing debate over a proposed referendum that would introduce major changes to Haiti’s current constitution, adopted in 1987.
This would include a provision allowing the president to run for two consecutive five-year terms without the currently required five-year pause.
Ms. La Lime stressed that such debates should not be allowed to detract from the organization and holding of delayed parliamentary and local elections, as well as presidential elections, in order to reach a political consensus as the best possible path forward.
“As Haiti prepares to enter a new electoral cycle, an inclusive and participatory process will be necessary to advance the path towards good governance and political stability in the country,” she stressed.
lack of funding
Despite the complex situation, the UN team in Haiti – led by the United Nations Integrated Office in the country, known as whine He continues to work hand in hand to help the authorities address urgent challenges as well as the structural drivers of instability.
Ms. Lime informed the council members that her team’s priorities include many joint initiatives aimed at implementing the national social protection policy, stimulating the fight against impunity and corruption and activating the relationship between humanitarian action, development and peace.
Confirming that Haiti’s humanitarian response plan for 2021-2022 still faces a shortfall of $198 million, she said 1.5 million people in the country are currently in need of humanitarian support – 1.3 million of whom are severely food insecure.
Against this background, she appealed to the Board and all donors to strengthen their support.