UNDP and Japan to support elections, reduce vulnerabilities in Haiti

Mar 10, 2015

New funding from Japan will help Haiti prepare and manage the country's upcoming elections

Two agreements worth $8.4 million will support Haiti’s upcoming election, strengthen the country’s electoral processes and reduce the risks from disasters.

Port-au-Prince, Haiti - The Ambassador of Japan to Haiti, his Excellency Mr. Katsuyoshi Tamura and Senior Country Director of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Mrs. Sophie de Caen today signed two funding agreements worth US$8.4 million to support elections and build resilience in Haiti.

An initial contribution of US$4.5 million will support technical and material assistance to the country’s upcoming elections, as well as boosting Haiti’s electoral systems. The funds will reinforce the electoral process support fund established in 2005 by the Government of the Republic of Haiti, the European Union, the United States, Canada and Brazil.

$3.9 million will go towards boosting the resilience of vulnerable groups through a UNDP-led risk and disaster management project that works at the national and local levels. The 30 month project aims to develop and spread detailed knowledge about the risks and vulnerabilities to the main towns in Haiti’s north and north-eastern regions. It will also help implement risk mitigation activities and strengthen national and regional-level capacities to prepare for and respond to catastrophes, including in north and north eastern regions, and will aim to make the general public more aware of major risks.

The Government of Haiti trusts Japan and UNDP as partners and welcomes this new commitment. The Haitian authorities will provide all the necessary support to implement the projects,” said Ariel Henry, Haiti’s Interior Minister for Territorial Collectivities. 

The Ambassador of Japan, his Excellency Mr. Katsuyoshi Tamura, welcomed the new commitments, saying, "The organisation of free, inclusive and transparent elections is a necessity. But it is also our duty to show solidarity with the nations of the world which, like ours, have to deal with natural disasters. With this funding, Japan is renewing its friendship with Haiti through the proven and acknowledged expertise of the UNDP in these two fields."

The risk and disaster management project targets 100,000 direct beneficiaries and will be implemented through a participative community-based approach. It includes a training component for construction industry professionals on earthquake-resistant building techniques, as well as strengthening of community radio.

To ensure greater direct participation by communities and the strengthening of their resilience to disasters, UNDP works with decentralised levels of the national risk and disaster management system alongside the British branch of OXFAM, which is taking a leading role in this field in the north and north-east of the country.

UNDP manages the fund to support the electoral process by the Government of Haiti and its financial partners in consultation with the Provisional Electoral Council (CEP). The organisation is supporting the promotion of inclusive, transparent elections through training professional members of the electoral administration and through technical, strategic and operational assistance for the organisation of the elections. The $4.5 million provided by Japan will help ensure the election meets international standards, through purchasing electoral equipment and supporting the electoral administration in preparing for and managing the election.

Mrs Sophie de Caen, UNDP Senior Country Director in Haiti said, "Japan is a strong, long-standing partner of UNDP in Haiti. This financial contribution by Japan will enable the Haitian Government and its key institutions, such as the CEP and the Directorate of Civil Protection to effectively prepare. We can only welcome this commitment by the Government of Japan in support of democratic government and human resilience.

Contact information

Thibaut Monnier, Communication specialist, UNDP Haiti: +509 3600 7455, thibaut.monnier@undp.org

Philippe de Bard, Project Leader, UNDP Electoral Process Support Project: +509 4861 0057, philippe.de.bard@undp.org

Fenella Frost, Head of UNDP Haiti Disaster Risk and Reduction and Management Unit: +509 3600 9572, fenella.frost@undp.org


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