Haiti PM says Reconstruction Too Slow

Posted February 9th, 2012 at 10:20 pm (UTC-5)
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Haiti's prime minister says the Caribbean nation's post-earthquake reconstruction needs to move “faster” and “be more effective.”

Prime Minister Garry Conille told VOA his trip to Washington was aimed at improving things, to coordinate with donors and partners to “see how we can make a difference much more quickly for the millions of Haitians that are waiting for this support.”

He said those partners will contribute nearly $2 billion to the rebuilding effort.

In the interview, the Mr. Conille also said he was “optimistic” Haiti would make “clear progress” against the cholera epidemic that has infected nearly a half million people and killed nearly 7,000. The prime minister said said some 10,000 community health workers would soon begin a door-to-door campaign to fight the disease and the government was improving water and sanitation infrastructure to stop it from spreading further.

Mr. Conille spoke with VOA, a day after he met with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

The Haitian leader also met this week with officials from USAID, the Organization of American States, as well as the World Bank, Inter-American Development Bank and International Monetary Fund.

Haiti is the Western Hemisphere's poorest country.

The massive 7.0-magnitude earthquake in January 2010 killed at least 200,000 people in Haiti. Parts of the capital, Port-au-Prince, remain in ruins. Haitian officials say an estimated 550,000 people are still without homes, down from 1.5 million after the quake struck.