Former US president Bill Clinton declared his confidence in Haiti’s post-quake reconstruction effort on Wednesday, making a one-day visit amid civil unrest, rampant disease and a seemingly intractable political crisis.
The UN special envoy to Haiti traveled to the troubled country a day after the interim reconstruction commission of which he is co-chairman was forced to hold its meeting in the neighboring Dominican Republic after violence broke out following Haiti’s disputed Nov. 28 presidential election.
Clinton visited a cholera clinic run by Doctors Without Borders that has treated some of the more than 100,000 people sickened in the epidemic that broke out in October. He then went to the main UN peacekeeping base for meetings with Haitian and international officials.
The meeting a day before approved some US$430 million in projects. But it was more notable for anger over the slow pace of reconstruction and a letter from frustrated Haitian members who said they were left out of decisionmaking and complained approved projects “do not advance the reconstruction of Haiti and long-term development.”