Haiti’s new peril: hurricane season
June 1 was the start of the Atlantic hurricane season, and experts at NOAA are predicting three to seven major hurricanes. But, nearly five months after the January 12 earthquake, hundreds of thousands of Haitians are living in fraying tents while the Haitian government continues to work on emergency and evacuation plans.
Dr. Jean Pape, one of the country’s most prominent public health experts, estimates that only 1 percent of the masses stuck in dangerous flood zones have been relocated. – CBS News
According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), “the biggest challenge” in building shelters is “a lack of available land on which to build.” Much of the land suitable for relocation has been in the hands of a few powerful individuals. But, that problem reportedly was resolved in late March. During a visit to Haiti, former U.S. President Bill Clinton told the Miami Herald that Haiti’s President, René Préval, had signed an executive order giving the government the right of eminent domain.
Still, OCHA reports that obtaining needed land and receiving necessary supplies will take “many more months.” At this point, one is tempted to add…”if ever.”