Haitian President RenÃ© PrÃ©val has set 28 November as the date for the people of the earthquake-devastated nation to vote for his successor, a move welcomed today by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
Presidential decrees issued last Thursday and yesterday have also mandated that the Provisional Electoral Council organize legislative polls on that date.
In a statement issued by his spokesperson, Mr. Ban called on the Haitian Government, the Provisional Electoral Council, political parties and all Haitians to ensure that the upcoming elections are transparent and credible and serve to reinforce Haiti`s democratic institutions as the country strives to recover from the worst humanitarian crisis in its history. "
More than 200,000 people were killed in the 12 January earthquake, which left 1.3 million more homeless and destroyed countless buildings, including Government facilities, hospitals and schools.
The Secretary-General reiterates the United Nations` commitment to provide comprehensive support to the Haitian authorities in the preparation and conduct of the elections, " the statement said.
The UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) have already started providing security, logistical and technical assistance for the elections.
In his latest report to the Security Council on Haiti, Mr. Ban said that elections are central to the Government`s vision for a renewed State, a vision he appealed to the international community to support.
In his statement today, he encouraged UN Member States " especially those taking part in the international task force supporting the polls " to provide the financial resources needed for elections as swiftly as possible.