One Year of Hell in Haiti: Despair and Hope
It's been one year since hell broke loose on Haiti in the guise of earthquake. It’s not that Haiti had been a very prosperous nation before that. But that’s what made its condition after the quake worse. The quake killed almost 250,000 people in Jan 12, 2010 and an outbreak of cholera in October added another 3,750 people and the epidemic is still not over.
Billions of dollars have been donated since; the immediate response from the international community had been great; an army of relief workers had been working. But let’s assess the total gains of the year.
• Less than 5% of the rubble has been cleared.
• Only 15% of temporary-housing that is needed has been built.
• 1 million people are still displaced.
Americans alone donated 1.4 billion dollars to the country. So where has all the money gone? It is said that only 38% of the money has been actually spent for recovery.
Even today, hundreds of Haitians are living in tents under the worst sanitary conditions, even in Champs Mars, Port-au-Prince’s central plaza. To them the promises and renewed promises are like something happening in a completely different world, the world inside television, the world of politicians and happy people in prosperous countries.
They say they heard about aids on TV, but never saw any. The Haitian President seems to be very unpopular among masses. It is said that the Government and the handful of elite in Haiti have prevented the aids from penetrating to the mass. Denis O’Brien, chairman of Digicel, Haiti’s biggest foreign investor, says that the elite in Haiti are making profit from its destabilization. Evidently, the rubble that needs immediate removal includes this misrule and corrupted elite of Haiti.Continued on the next page