Caribbean Political Economy

‘The destiny of Haiti is in the hands of its children’, Rodolfo Mattarollo

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Ambassador Rodolfo Mattarollo, Special Representative of the UNASUR Technical Secretariat in Haiti,is interviewed by Claudia Florentin, Spanish Editor, Latin America and Caribbean Communication Agency (ALC).

In my understanding, only a Great National Agreement will unblock the situation,,   (one that) establishes the conditions for (…) the building on solid foundations of a legally constituted state, which requires, among other things, that the state fulfills its obligations in the fight against impunity…

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Haiti In A Time of Catastrophe, Robert Fatton Jr.

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Keynote address at the first annual conference on January 12, 2012, at Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers, Florida, to commemorate the earthquake in Haiti and to encourage support for rebuilding efforts. Professor Robert Fatton Jr. is Julia Cooper Professor of Politics at the Woodrow Wilson Department of Politics, University of Virginia.

In the midst of the cataclysm Haitians showed a new sense of solidarity and citizenship that offered a glimpse of an alternative order; whether they can reignite this fleeting solidarity and finally understand that a better future requires the demise of the old ways of governing and producing, remains an open question…

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ALBA Countries to Develop Road Map for Haiti’s Reconstruction, TeleSur

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Webmaster’s note: the XI ALBA Summit held in Caracas February 4 (which was, as is customary, virtually blanked by the mainstream media) manifested the continuing vitality of this emerging bloc. Decisions were taken on the consolidation of an ALBA economic,   space and on an ALBA-Haiti reconstruction programme. Present at the Summit were the leaders of three CARICOM countries who are also ALBA members, and Haitian President Michel Martelly, who announced that his country was exploring the possibility of becoming a full member of ALBA.

Caracas 4 February 2012 (Telesur) The countries of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) are developing a roadmap to assist in the reconstruction of Haiti, prioritising health, education, energy, food production, infrastructure and training of qualified personnel…

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St Lucia, Suriname, declare interest in joining ALBA

Caribbean states join Mercosur in barring Falklands’ flagged vessels from their ports Merco Press

Haiti Two Years After, Joel Dreyfuss

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An accompanying note from Mariama Williams says “For the women, men and children still in tents and coping with long duree of aftereffects have been quite inspiring to me…You and your fellow Haitians are exempleries of resilience, strength and courage but mostly love and care.”

Beyond disappointment at the slow progress of reconstruction, many Haitians and Haitian Americans have begun to lose faith. We have begun to wonder if the sharp divisions of class and color in Haiti are an unavoidable obstacle to progress, and realize that they must be overcome for the poor Caribbean nation of 10 million to move forward…

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Haiti’s ‘dream house’ nightmare, Ayiti Kale Je

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Ayiti Kale Je (Haiti Grassroots Watch) is a collaboration of grassroots media organizations which focuses on monitoring the country’s reconstruction from the viewpoint of Haiti’s majority.

Cité Soleil, Dec. 14, 2011 – While over one million refugees suffered under tents following the January 12, 2010, earthquake, 128 newly constructed homes, finished in May, 2010, sat empty for 15 months. Today, the majority of these “social housing” units are occupied, but mostly by illegal squatters who broke in by smashing windows and doors…

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Perspectives on the Reconstruction of Haiti, P.J Patterson

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CARICOM Special Representative on Haiti and former Prime Minister of Jamaica P.J. Patterson, in addressing a business seminar of investors from Japan and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) on Tuesday, November 22, in Pt Spain Trinidad, invited all potential investors to visit Haiti and see for themselves the opportunities which were available. Mr Patterson said that “Investment opportunities in Haiti are limited more by the imagination than by objective attributes or need”…

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Haiti: Tapping the Past, Facing the Future, Reginald Dumas

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Keynote address at the 23rd Annual Conference of the Haitian Studies Association, UWI, Mona, Jamaica, Friday, November 11, 2011. Ambassador Reginald Dumas is a distinguished former diplomat of Trinidad and Tobago who served as the United Nations Secretary General’s Special Adviser on Haiti in 2004.

Let me indicate at the outset what I shall not be talking about this morning…I shall not be talking about Haiti being the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere. I shall not be talking about what we have come to call “Haiti’s glorious past”. I have the greatest admiration for the exploits and achievements of Boukman and Toussaint and Dessalines and Christophe and others who fought successfully for independence, but we should in my view be focusing less on the past and much more on Haiti’s somewhat less than glorious present, and on the possibilities for its future…

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Comment: A Timely, Critical look at Haiti, Rickey Singh

Post-Earthquake Haiti: Report by the International Crisis Group

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A year and a half after a deadly earthquake devastated its capital, 650,000 victims still wait for permanent housing in more than 1,000 unstable emergency camps across Haiti as a new hurricane season arrives. Post-quake Haiti: Security Depends on Resettlement and Development , the latest policy briefing from the International Crisis Group, examines the immediate challenge faced by Michel Martelly…

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See also Haiti: Declaration on the Right to Housing by Internally Displaced Persons

The PetroCaribe WikiLeaks Files: How the U.S. Embassy and Oil Companies Fought Against a deal That Would Benefit Haiti’s Poor, Dan Coughlin and Kim Ives

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Leaked US Embassy cables show how ‘Washington and its allies, including Big Oil majors like ExxonMobil and Chevron, maneuvered aggressively behind the scenes to scuttle the PetroCaribe deal’ between Haiti and Venzuela, which would save Haiti $100 million a year and provide financing for providing basic goods and services for 10 million Haitians.

Go to Nation article on the PetroCaribe cables

Haiti: Declaration Against Violent Evictions by Internally Displaced Persons

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We representatives from more than 50 [internally displaced persons] camps from Port-au-Prince, Delmas, Carrefour, Pétion-ville, Tabard, Croix-des-Bouquets, Petit-Goave, Grand Goave, Las Cahobas, and Jacmel, who have united together in Haiti from May 19-21, 2011 under the initiative of the Force for Reflection and Action on Housing (FRAKKA), together with other partners… We from camp committees, grassroots groups, and non-governmental organizations… We committed citizens, plus comrades from other countries who participated in the International Forum on the Crisis of Housing in Haiti… We denounce with all our might the acts of violence that are taking place in many camps to force residents to leave, without having anyplace else to go…

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Haitian Mayor’s Office Vows to Destroy Refugee Camps, Launches Violent Campaign Beverly Bell, May 27

Haiti: Declaration on the Right to Housing by Internally Displaced Persons

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Hundreds of Internally Displaced Persons from at least 40 grassroots and non-governmental organizations and at least 35 IDP camp committees assembled on May 19-21 in Port-au-Prince to reflect on the problem of housing within Haiti’s longstanding crisis, have adopted the following resolution. It is a powerful and informative statement. Help give a voice to the Haitian people by circulating it.

1. We commend the initiative taken by FRAKKA [the Force for Reflection and Action in Housing] and other partners to host this forum, which allowed us to hear the testimonies of many camp residents and to exchange views on housing and other issues being faced in the camps. This exchange allowed us to better understand the root of the problems we face and to issue resolutions and an action plan that will guide our efforts during 2011 – 2012.

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Haiti: Reparations and Reconstruction Horace Campbell

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For two hundred years, the peoples of Haiti have been struggling to reconstruct their society. Before the Haitian Revolution (1791-1804) could be consolidated, the French and other imperial powers worked to isolate the revolution for fear that the ideas of freedom would be contagious and spread… Despite this, the fears of the imperial west that the Haitian Revolution would inspire other slaves in Latin America, the Caribbean and the United States came to fruition. …

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Haiti: What Finance, for What Reconstruction? Beverly Keene

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Social organizations set out agenda to build another Haiti

Port-au-Prince, April 29, 2011. Approximately one hundred representatives of social organizations from throughout the country; including farmers, women, labor, students, human rights, and professionals; this afternoon concluded three days of intense debate about the kind of Haiti they want to see, the obstacles they face, and the nature of the financing they need…

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Haiti one year after the donor conference, Roger Annis

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Statements by the President of the UN Security Council, the Cuban Foreign Minister and the CARICOM Heads of Government deplore the broken promises of the ‘international community’ to the Hatian people.

View the Security Council debate and read CARICOM and Cuban statements

Haitian social organizations depict a record of failure and advocate an alternative construction, PAPDA

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Help give a voice to the Haitian people by circulating this statement widely

On the first anniversary of the conference of donors on the “Reconstruction of Haiti”, held at UN headquarters in New York in late March 2010, our representatives and representatives of some forty organizations and sectors in Haitian society, meeting in Port-au-Prince March 26, 2011, have reflected on the path followed by our country since this conference. A year after the promises of reconstruction with billions of U.S. dollars, we find that nothing significant has really been undertaken. No rupture was initiated with the approaches and practices that have, over the years, impoverished and rendered so vulnerable and the Republic of Haiti…

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Statement in PDF format Please circulate widely

French original with list of signatory organisations

On My Return to Haiti, Jean-Bertrand Aristide

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What we have learned in one long year of mourning after Haiti’s earthquake is that an exogenous plan of reconstruction – one that is profit-driven, exclusionary, conceived of and implemented by non-Haitians – cannot reconstruct Haiti. It is the solemn obligation of all Haitians to join in the reconstruction and to have a voice in the direction of the nation…

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We are at saturation point, Camille Chalmers

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Camille Chalmers, a Haitian economist is Executive Director of the Hatian Pllatform for Development Alternatives in Port Au Prince. In this interview he analyses the factors leading up to the present situation in Haiti.

The problems of Haiti go back to well before the earthquake. The extent of losses caused by the earthquake and other disasters, culminating in the outbreak of cholera, are in fact the result of a triple failure: that of the State, of social policy and of an economic model…

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Haiti One Year Later: The Failure of an Imperial Trusteeship, Alex Dupuy

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Alex Dupuy

Alex Dupuy

Alex Dupuy, a native of Haiti, is a professor of sociology at Wesleyan University and the author most recently of “The Prophet and Power: Jean-Bertrand Aristide, the Inter-national Community, and Haiti.” From the Stabroek News, January 10, 2011 (A shorter version first appeared in the Washington Post on Friday, January 7, 2011.)

The international community responded immediately and massively to the devastating earthquake that struck Haiti on January 12, 2010…The Haitian population welcomed and was grateful for the humanitarian response and gesture of international solidarity. By contrast, today Haitians are increasingly impatient, discontented, and saying “they’ve had enough” with the United Nations, the international community, and the Haitian government for the lack of progress in rebuilding the economy and the lives shattered by the earthquake…

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Haiti–CARICOM Consultations Advance Capacity-Building Support, OSR

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From the Office of the CARICOM Special Representative on Haiti

The Government of Haiti and representatives of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) have agreed on project proposals designed to strengthen Haiti’s institutional and technical capacity in three priority areas: housing and settlement development; physical and environmental planning; and infrastructure development and coordination…

Text of Communique

Protest letter from Haitian members of the Interim Haiti Reconstruction Commission to Co-Chairmen

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A letter from the 12 Haitian members of the Interim Haiti Reconstruction Commission details their systematic marginalisation from information and decision-making in the affairs of the Commission. The letter was sent to a meeting of the Commssion held in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, on December 14, 2010 which was chaired by Bill Clinton. Co-chair Haitian Prime Minister Max Bellerive did not attend.

Text of Letter from Haitian IHRC members (PDF file)

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