Last month, the government announced a state of emergency after Superstorm Sandy created $104 million in agriculture damage and left up to 1.5 million Haitians facing hunger.
Meanwhile, the growth projection was recently lowered from 8 percent to 2 percent by international economic forecasters, and the United Nations independent human rights expert blasted the government for poor governance, saying despite leaders’ statement that the country is open for business, Haiti still has a long way to go when it comes to rule of law.
And on Monday, human rights experts and others continued to highlight Haiti’s challenges: a report by the international aid group, Oxfam, said that despite reducing the quake victims in camps from 1.5 million to 370,000, 86 percent of people living in camps in Delma area of Port-au-Prince say they are unable to leave and they live with under the fear of forced eviction.
Human rights advocates and students protested outside the United Nations peacekeeping base demanding that the global body take responsibility for the deadly cholera epidemic that has sickened more than a half million Haitians and left 8,000 dead.
The protests came a day before U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is expected to launch a $2.2 billion initiative to help eliminate the waterborne disease in both Haiti and the neighboring Dominican Republic over the next decade.
In the strongest statement by any Haitian leader since the disease arrived in Haiti, 10 months after the quake, Martelly said Monday that while he won’t engage in the debate about who’s responsible for cholera in Haiti, the United Nations “certainly” should take responsibility.
“The UN knows better than me who has brought cholera to Haiti,” he said. “The U.N. itself could bring money to the table.”