The Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) recently released a video aimed at enhancing women’s participation in the upcoming local elections. In Haitian Creole, the one-minute clip emphasizes the importance of women’s participation in political and social life in Haiti. “Pou peyi nou devlope tout bon vre, fanm gen plas yo nan pouvwa leta a.” For our country to truly develop, women must have a place in public office.
The video calls on political parties to adhere to the electoral law’s gender quota, which requires at least 30% representation of women as political candidates.
In recent months, the CEP has produced a series of videos explaining the electoral process, on topics such as voter registration and candidate registration. The first video provided instructions and key dates on the voter registration process, while the second video described the new on-line registration system for candidates and parties.
MINUSTAH Deputy Chief of Communications and Spokeswoman Sophie Boutaud de la Combe explained that this public education series is a joint initiative between MINUSTAH and the CEP to help enforce the 30% quota. “Women represent more than half of Haitian society; [they] should and can have their say concerning the future of the country. [Women] must be supported so that their voices can be heard.”
Although the 30% quota is mandated by both Article 100.1 of the 2015 Electoral decree and the Haitian constitution, to date, the rate of women’s participation in the 2015 elections is significantly low. Our analysis of the legislative and presidential candidate lists demonstrated that only 8% of all candidates are women.
The CEP hopes that the new video clip, and accompanying public education campaign -- on social media, local TV, and the radio -- will lead to a higher rate of women’s participation for the local and municipal elections, which include over 5,000 seats.