Here is a picture of the 5 Independent Members of the Verification Commission. The 5 Independent Members of the Verification Commission established - From Right to Left: Francois Benoit, Gedeon, Pierre Wilfrid Sanon, Marc Donald Jean, and Michel Eric Gaillard.
On Thursday, April 28, 2016, at the National Palace, the Provisional President Jocelerme Privert accompanying the Prime Minister Enex Jean-Charles installed the 5-member Independent Commission for Electoral Evaluation and Verification (CIEVE). The main objectives of installing this commission are, reviewing previous election processes and results, electoral court decisions, and restore confidence and trust before moving forward with the unfinished election. The five members of the Commission are: (1) Mr. François Benoît, the leader, and former member of the Provisional Electoral Council (2005-2006); (2) Mr. Gédéon Jean, former member of the Independent Electoral Evaluation Commission created by presidential decree dated December 22, 2015 (under the Martelly regime); (3) Mr. Pierre Wilfrid Sanon, designated by the Haitian Association of construction companies; (4) Father McDonald Jean, appointed by the Anglican Church (former senator and member of the Council of the Wise in 2004); and (5) Mr. Michel Eric Gaillard, designated by the Order of Chartered Professional Accountants of Haiti.
Here is a picture of Mr. Francois Benoit, President of Verification Commission.
Pierre Francois Benoit, the leader of the Independent Commission for Electoral Evaluation and Verification (CIEVE) has completed the audit of last election and concluded the findings of the commission after a month long review. As per his report dated May 30, 2016, after an examination of 25% random sample of the roughly 13,000 tally sheets from polling stations, the Commission has noticed about 628,000 untraceable votes. Lot of votes could not be traced to a voter or to a group of voters. It has been observed that often number of untraceable votes in the polling stations have surpassed the legitimate votes. Out of the total valid votes of 1,560,631 about 29% or 448,000 voters were untraceable and 180,250 were with fake CIN, making a total of 628,000 or 40% of total valid votes (1,560,631). It was further noticed that first place winning president candidate received more number of untraceable votes than the combined total of such votes to second and third place winners. The CIEVE has recommended throwing out the disputed results of last year's first-round presidential election and restart from zero, because it appeared to be tainted by fraud. As per Benoit, it appeared electoral fraud was masterminded at a "high level."
May 30, 2016 - A Verification Commission headed by Pierre Francois Benoit reported that the elections conducted on October 25, 2015 was characterized by significant fraud and professional misconduct. "After digging into it, we started seeing a pattern where a lot of votes could not be traced to a voter or to a group of voters. I call them "zombie votes"
On the evening of May 30th, 2016, Haiti's Independent Commission of Electoral Evaluation and Verification (CIEVE), a five-member team led by a businessman, Francois Benoit, who is a former ambassador to the U.S, released its long-awaited report on the controversial Washington-supported Haitian elections of August 9 and October 25, 2015. The audited report of the five member panel reveals that "the electoral process was marred by serious irregularities, grave inconsistencies, and massive fraud, because only 9% of the total vote cast has been found to be valid." The members of the CIEVE have reviewed 3,235 voter tallies (procès verbal), i.e., a 25% random sample of 12,939 total votes cast.
Their concern includes the complete lack of female officials elected. However, as per the Commission, at least one woman Nétlande Pierre Dérius of the Artibonite did indeed win by popular vote and her case along with 21 other legislature contestants should be remanded to a special electoral court for reinstatement.
Here is the report of the Commission of Evaluation to the Nation.
There were many instances where the number of untraceable votes (also called zombie votes) exceeded the legitimate votes. One of the CIEVE members has summed it up as, more dead people have voted than the livings. Suspecting a high level of electoral fraud, they have recommended that October's presidential first-round election should be "restart from zero." The number of untraceable votes received by the first-place presidential candidate, according to the results of the CEP, was higher than the total number of such votes received by the second- and third-place candidates and it was higher than the difference between the first- and fifth-place candidates. As per CIEVE, it appeared that electoral fraud was masterminded at a "high level." Not only some acts were committed in simple violation of the Act, they were well organized; even the electoral decree and the Opont led CEP violated its own standard which were not in conformity with the constitution and the principles of democratic governance."La mission de L'oea.
Martelly's Haitian Bald Headed Party (PHTK) has dismissed the findings of the Commission arguing that it is just a plan for Provisional President Jocelerme Privert to remain in power.
May, 20, 2016 - The chairman of the Election Commission of Verification, François Benoit as well as Several members of the Scientific and Technical Police were present at the Vote Tabulation Centre (CTV) to verify signatures and fingerprints of a sample of voters. The Evaluation Commission has 30 days to accomplish this their mission.
In last April, on 28th, the interim President Jocelerme Privert installed an Independent Commission for Electoral Evaluation and Verification (CIEVE) with the objectives of reviewing previous election results and electoral court decisions, before moving forward with the unfinished election. It was decided that the commission would conduct a random sample survey of 25% of the roughly 13,000 tally sheets collected from the polling stations.
The submitted Report of such Independent Commission on May 30, 2016, audited by a five-member panel, led by a businessman, Francois Benoit, who is a former ambassador to the U.S, shows that out of the total valid votes of 1,560,631 about 29% or 448,000 voters were untraceable, because they did not fill the required "procès-verbal de carence" which were meant to be filled by the representatives of political parties and election observers who were on duty, entitled to cast votes at the polling stations where they were engaged other than where they were registered to vote. The number of fake CIN numbers (as per National Identification Card) written by hands was 180,250 or 16.2% of the vote cast, because the signatures or fingerprints recorded at the voting centers do not match with the records on the CIN cards. For the 1,112,600 traceable votes, 180,250 were with fake CIN, making a total of 628,000 (448,000 + 180,250) untraceable votes or 40% of total valid votes (1,560,631).
The commission has further observed that often number of untraceable votes in the polling stations have surpassed the legitimate votes. The commission has noticed that number of untraceable votes received by the first-place candidate, according to the results of the CEP, was higher than the total number of such votes received by the second- and third-place candidates and it was higher than the difference between the first- and fifth-place candidates. The CIEVE has recommended rejecting the last year's first-round presidential election because it appeared to be tainted by fraud. As per Benoit, it appeared that electoral fraud was masterminded at a "high level."
However, the final decision whether to redo the election will have to be made by a reconfigured Provisional Electoral Council.
May 30, 2016 - As soon as President Jocelerme Privert received the report from the Verification Commission, handed it over to the President of the CEP, Leopold Berlanger, who would be responsible to determine on whether or not to follow the recommendations of the Commission. One of the recommendations was to redo the presidential elections. The only comment from Privert was to urged the CEP to "make good use of the report and the decision was not his to make"
Some say that president Privert intelligently transferred a hot potato over to the CEP