July 16, 2010
Only half of earthquake pledge collected so far

Haiti has only collected half of the US$150 million promised to the impoverished nation six months after an earthquake there killed 300,000 and destroyed much of its already underdeveloped infrastructure.{{more}}

Head of the local Regional Integration and Diaspora Unit, Ambassador Ellsworth John, reporting on last week’s CARICOM Heads of Government Meeting in Jamaica, told Vincentians journalists that CARICOM has decided to streamline the management of aid to the country.

“What was also apparent was the fact that the NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations) have been getting a lot of the money from the international community to do things in Haiti, and the collaboration between the government and the NGOs was not at a place where it was supposed to be,” Ambassador John said.

CARICOM has decided that resources going into Haiti should be centralized within the government machinery.

“Because, you have all these pledges that have been made to Haiti to help in the recovery and the people in Haiti have heard that all these pledges have been made. The government is not getting a lot of the money. Most of the money, if any, has been going to the NGO’s. In fact, we’ve had more pledges than actual money going forward to help Haiti in its recovery process,” he said.

CARICOM met with the Organisation of American states (OAS), and the meeting made a commitment to work closely with the United Nations and the OAS to ensure that the process in Haiti is better coordinated, even as the nation prepared for general elections in October. (KC)