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Political Parties - 2006

During presidential campaigns, political parties organized under the banner of specific personalities. Political parties have existed in name for a long time, but they have not exerted any independent influence on the political system. Rather, parties have served as campaign vehicles for individual politicians. These parties typically have a half-life of only a few years, and the 2015 elections saw an almost complete re-shuffling of the parties that competed in 2006.

30 September 2016 was the 25th anniversary of the 1991 toppling of Haiti's President Jean-Bertrand Aristide – who was removed in a coup that enjoyed the support of the United States, bent on overturning the Fanmi Lavalas movement whose ascent to power followed decades of imperialist-backed dictatorship in the country.

The President is elected by popular vote to serve a 5-year term. In the Senate 30 members are elected by popular vote to serve 6-year terms. In the Chamber of Deputies 99 members are elected by popular vote to serve 4-year terms. One-third of the Senate is elected every two years.

Many of the most serious challenges to democracy in Haiti lie in the realm of political party development, political competition, and consensus-building on the rules that govern political change. Effective management of the electoral process and democratic political party development are both essential benchmarks in a peaceful political transition process and essential components of the democratic transition process in Haiti.

Front for Hope (Front de l’espoir, Fwon Lespwa) - The Front for Hope was founded in 2005 to support the candidacy of René Préval in the 2006 presidential election. This is a party of alliances that include the Effort and Solidarity to Build a National and Popular Alternative (Effort de solidarité pour la construction d’une alternative nationale et populaire, ESCANP); the Open the Gate Party (Pati Louvri Baryè, PLB); and grass-roots organizations, such as Grand-Anse Resistance Committee Comité de résistance de Grand-Anse), the Central Plateau Peasants’ Group (Mouvement paysan du plateau Central) and the Southeast Kombit Movement (Mouvement Kombit du SudEst or Kombit Sudest). The Front for Hope is headed by René Préval, the head of state elected in 2006. In the 2006 legislative elections, the party won 13 of the 30 seats in the Senate and 24 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

Merging of Haitian Social Democratic Parties (Parti Fusion des sociaux-démocrates haïtiens, PFSDH) - This party was created on 23 April 2005 with the fusion of the following three democratic parties: Ayiti Capable (Ayiti kapab), the National Congress of Democratic Movements (Congrès national des mouvements démocratiques, KONAKOM), and the Haitian National Revolutionary Party (Parti national progressiste révolutionnaire, PANPRA). The PFSDH was headed by Serge Gilles. In 2006, the party won 4 of the 30 seats in the Senate and 18 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

Organization of the Struggling People (Organisation du peuple en lutte, OPL) - This party emerged in 1996 as an offshoot of the pro-Aristide Lavalas Political Organization (Organisation politique Lavas, OPL), founded in 1991. The party opposed Aristide and was led by Paul Denis. In the 2006 legislative elections, the OPL won 3 of the 30 seats in the Senate and 11 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

National Christian Union for the Reconstruction of Haiti (Union nationale chrétienne pour la reconstruction d’Haïti, UNCRH) - The current UNCRH leader is Jean Chavannes Jeune. This party challenged the results of the 2006 elections in which they won 2 of the 30 seats in the Senate and 12 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

Democratic Alliance (Alyans) - This party is a coalition of the Confederation of Democratic Unity (Kovansyon Inite Dèmokratik, KID) and the Popular Party for the Renewal of Haiti (Parti populaire pour le renouveau d’Haïti, PPRH). Its leader was Evans Paul. The Democratic Alliance challenged the results of the 2006 elections in which they won 1 seat out of the 30 seats in the Senate and 10 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

Artibonite in Action (Latibonit an Aksyon, LAAA) - This party was headed by Youri Latortue. In the 2006 legislative elections, it won 2 of the 30 seats in the Senate and 5 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies. This party also challenged the results of the 2006 elections.

Christian Movement for a New Haiti (Mouvement chrétien pour une nouvelle Haïti, MOCHRENA) - Also known as the Christian National Movement (Mouvement chrétien national), this is a center-right party founded in 1991 by evangelical churches. Luc Mésadieu and Gilbert N. Léger shared the leadership of the party. In the 2006 legislative elections, it won 3 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

The Lavalas Family (La Fanmi Lavalas, FL) - This party was founded in November 1996 by former president Aristide. It is pro-Aristide and centrist. The FL emerged when the Lavals Political Organization (Organisation politique Lavalas, OPL) split into two rival factions, the Lavalas Family and the Organization of Struggling People, following strong opposition to the economic reforms proposed by René Préval, who was the president of Haiti at the time. Leadership of the party is currently shared by former president Jean-Bertrand Aristide, in exile, and former prime minister Yvon Neptune. Despite Aristide’s absence, this party plays a key role in Haiti’s political scene. It won 2 of the 30 seats in the Senate and 1 seat out of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies in the 2006 legislative elections. Fanmi Lavalas wond 6 seats in 2015. The Fanmi Lavalas party could have its official mandate restored in the 2016 presidential elections where Dr. Maryse Narcisse, backed by Aristide, was in the running.

Assembly of Progressive National Democrats (Rassemblement des démocrates nationalistes et progressistes, RDNP) - The RDNP was created in 1979 and is a Christian democratic party. Leslie Manigat was the party’s secretary-general. The RDNP won 1 seat out of the 30 seats in the Senate and 1 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies in the 2006 legislative elections.

National Reconstruction Front (Front de reconstruction nationale, FRN) - The FRN was established in February 2004 by a group of former rebels led by Guy Philippe. Its leader was Buteur Metayer, and its secretary-general was Guy Philippe. In the 2006 legislative elections, it won 1 seat out of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

Movement for National Reconstruction (Mouvement pour la reconstruction nationale, MRN) - The MRN was founded in 1991 by René Théodore, who was the leader of the Unified Party of Haitian Communists (Parti unifié des communistes haïtiens, PUCH) at that time. It was headed by Jean-Enol Buteau. It won 1 seat out of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

Mobilization for Haiti’s Development (Mobilisation pour le progrès d’Haïti, MPH) - The MPH was led by Samir Mourra. It won 3 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies in the 2006 legislative elections.

Cooperative Action to Build Haiti (Action coopérative pour construire Haïti, KONBA) - This party was headed by Jean-Baptiste Chavannes. It won 2 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies. The party also challenged the results of the 2006 elections.62

Haitian Democratic and Reform Movement (Mouvement démocratique et rénovateur d’Haïti, MODEREH) - The MODEREH was headed by Dany Toussaint and Prince Pierre Sonson. It won 1 seat in the Chamber of Deputies in 2006.

Independent Movement for National Reconciliation (Mouvement indépendant pour la réconciliation nationale, MIRN) - The MIRN was led by Luc Fleurinord. It won 1 seat out of the 30 seats in the Senate and 1 of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies. This party challenged the results of the 2006 elections.

Democratic Action to Build Haiti (Action démocratique pour bâtir Haïti, ADHEBA) - This party was founded in 2004. Led by Camille Leblanc, it won 1 seat out of the 99 seats in the Chamber of Deputies in the 2006 legislative elections.

Pont - The leader of this party is Jean-Marie Cherestal. It won 1 out of the 30 seats in the Senate and challenged the results of the 2006 elections.

Other political parties in Haiti include the Alliance for the Liberation and Advancement of Haiti (Alliance pour la libération et l’avancement d’Haïti, ALAH), the Alternative for Change (L’alternative pour le changement, AC), the CREDO, the Haitian Democratic Party (Parti démocratique d’Haïti, PADEMH), the Haitian National Popular Party (Parti populaire national haïtien, PPNH), the Konbit National Movement (Mouvman Konbit Nasyonal, MKN), the National Patriotic Movement (Mouvement national patriotique, MNP), the National Progressive Democratic Party of Haiti (Parti national démocratique progressiste d’Haïti (PNDPH), the National Unity Movement (Mouvement d’unité nationale), the National Workers’ Party (Parti National des Travailleurs, PNT), the Organization for Democracy in Haiti (Organisation pour la démocratie en Haïti, OPDH), the Papaye Peasants Movement (Mouvement paysan de Papaye, MPP), the Popular Star, the Rally of Christian Democrats (Rassemblement des démocrates chrétiens), the Union for National Reconstruction (Union pour la reconstruction nationale), and the Union of Democratic Patriots (Union des patriotes démocratiques).




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