Monday, October 25, 2010

Haiti ... the cholera outbreak

Dear Colleagues

The news of cholera in Haiti is very bad news ... and we have to hope that the outbreak will be contained. I am not optimistic, however. It seems that the pace of everything in Haiti has slowed down in the past six months ... certainly relative to the urgency in the first weeks after the earthquake.

Up to now my efforts to see more transparency and accountability in Haiti have come to nothing ... almost nothing, shall we say! Some of the slow-down may be attributed to the need to have elections, but by no means all of the apparent lethargy is because of this. Some of the slowness is because it takes time to remove the constraints on progress that are part of the general governance situation in the country. Whether or not this will get any better after an election is not at all clear.

I am really disturbed by the statistic quoted in news stories that there are more than a million people living under canvas in Port-au-Prince and the surrounding area ... and not too many stories coming out of Haiti about much practical rebuilding yet!

There is still a case to be made for accountability in this society.

Peter Burgess

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