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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
05PORTAUPRINCE2623
2005-10-21 19:12:00
UNCLASSIFIED
Embassy Port Au Prince
Cable title:  

LAVALAS CONFIDENT OF VICTORY, BUT WARY OF CEP

Tags:   PGOV  PREL  PHUM  HA 
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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
						UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 PORT AU PRINCE 002623 

SIPDIS

SOUTHCOM ALSO FOR POLAD

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM HA
SUBJECT: LAVALAS CONFIDENT OF VICTORY, BUT WARY OF CEP


UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 PORT AU PRINCE 002623

SIPDIS

SOUTHCOM ALSO FOR POLAD

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM HA
SUBJECT: LAVALAS CONFIDENT OF VICTORY, BUT WARY OF CEP



1. (C) SUMMARY. Lavalas leaders Yvon Feuille, Louis Gerald
Gilles, Rudy Heriveaux, Sorel Francois and Jonas Coffy told
Poloffs on October 13 that they are confident of a Marc Bazin
victory in the upcoming elections. They believed that
success in the Departments of the North (Cap-Haitien),
Northeast (Fort Liberte) and West (Port-au-Prince) would
secure enough votes for Bazin to win, followed by Simeus and
Preval. They expressed enthusiasm for a Bazin presidency
with Simeus as Prime Minister. The leaders were dismissive
of the chances of several other candidates, including Leslie
Manigat, Evans Paul and Charles Henri Baker. While
confident, they nevertheless asked Poloffs for a myriad of
assistance, including a Lavalas seat on the Provisional
Electoral Council (CEP) and financial assistance for
campaigning. The leaders asserted that Serge Gilles' Fusion
party manipulates the CEP through its sponsored member
Rosemond Pradel. They claimed that the CEP left off over 75
percent of the qualified Lavalas legislative candidates from
the initial list of approved candidates, but they affirmed
that Lavalas would still win around 15 of 30 Senate seats and
40 of 100 Deputy seats. The leaders were confident that the
legislative branch would be composed largely of Fusion, Tet
Ansanm (supporting Dumas Simeus), and Lavalas. END SUMMARY.

Bazin will win...
--------------


2. (C) Gilles and Feuille were confident that Bazin would
win, despite his previous failure against Aristide in 1990.
Feuille said that the race would be decided among Bazin,
Simeus and Preval. The key to a Bazin victory, according to
Heriveaux, is success in the North and in Port-au-Prince.
Gilles admitted that Lavalas has problems in the Artibonite
department, where Simeus and Preval are both strong. Simeus
and Preval could, however, wind up splitting the Artibonite
vote to the benefit of Bazin. Nevertheless, Gilles said that
a Bazin-Simeus runoff is agreeable to them, and that a Bazin
presidency with Simeus as Prime Minister would be good for
Haiti. They were dismissive of the chances of the other
candidates of both the right and left.

...unless the CEP cheats
--------------



4. (C) Heriveaux feared that while Lavalas would win the
vote, Serge Gilles' Fusion party might wind up winning the
election. He was referring to a widely held belief that
certain members of the CEP, most notably Secretary General
Rosemond Pradel, are working behind the scenes to ensure a
Fusion victory no matter what the vote indicates. (NOTE: the
CEP has since reorganized with Pradel forming a part of the
executive subcommittee. END NOTE.) As evidence, Sorel
Francois cited the fact that initial candidate lists
published by the CEP conspicuously omitted all but two of
Lavalas' 18 senatorial candidates and almost all of their
deputy candidates. As justification for these omissions, the
CEP indicated that the candidates' files were missing key
documents, in particular the financial good conduct
disclosures from persons who had previously held office.
Sorel Francois stated that the CEP had simply discarded these
documents. The leaders have received assurances that their
candidates will be on the final lists. Nevertheless,
Heriveaux implored Polcouns to be vigilant with respect to
the CEP.

More Problems
--------------


5. (C) Sorel Francois asked if the USG could help with
funding from UNOPS for the Lavalas campaign, stating that
Bazin has financial problems that could hurt his campaign.
PolCouns replied that Lavalas is one of the parties that
UNOPS will be supporting, but pointed out that the UNOPS
package is technical assistance, not cash. Feuille also
asked PolCouns to intervene with the IGOH to reactivate Radio
Ti Moun, the Lavalas radio station that was shut down after
Aristide's departure. Pol FSN asked the group whether
certain candidates will cause trouble if the elections do not
go their way. They unanimously responded that Evans Paul,
Guy Philippe and Dany Toussaint can be counted upon to
agitate, possibly violently, if their campaigns are
unsuccessful. Sorel Francois also stated that Lavalas would
not be able to participate if the CEP continued to obstruct a
large part of their candidates.

The Future
--------------


6. (C) Once the discussion veered away from the elections
into speculation about a Bazin administration, Emboff
cautioned them not to make the same mistakes as the previous
administration. He stated that Aristide,s second
administration had failed because he had not respected the
international donors, he had not maintained transparent
fiscal policy, he had riddled his administration with drug
traffickers, and Lavalas had cheated on an election that they
would have won anyway. The leaders concurred and made
reference to the fact that any Lavalas government cannot
control the entire legislature after this election. Francois
stated that the winning parties will have to build
coalitions. Feuille also made reference to another impending
problem, the poor state of relations with the Dominican
Republic. Gilles and Heriveaux said that the poor relations
are due in part to Haiti,s complete inability to control the
border.


7. (C) COMMENT. The CEP and IGOH have assured us that a
substantial number of candidates excluded in the first scrub
will be reinstated. Post will closely review the final list
of approved national candidates to ensure that there is no
anti-Lavalas bias. It was encouraging to hear these men,
usually so single-mindedly obsessed with power, start to
discuss constructive governance rather than overwhelming
victory. Gilles has previously advocated the creation of a
&new elite8, presumably to replace the old elite, but his
colleagues seem to understand the need to work with the
business class. Gilles deferred more than usual to his
colleagues and was the first to invoke Bazin, saying "he is
my candidate". It appears he has rejoined the fold and will
not follow through on his presidential aspirations. END
COMMENT.
CARNEY