Haiti no longer receives discounted oil from an increasingly chaotic Venezuela - and all the good (cheaper oil) and bad (blatant corruption) that came with it. Much of Port au Prince is now getting by with only thee hours of electricity a day negatively affecting the economy, political stability, health care, and transportation. Increasing renewable energy may help Haiti in the long run, but in the short term, a more predictable and rational approach to petroleum imports is required. The full article by Associated Press journalist Ralph Thomassaint Joseph follows.
The RAND Corportation has produced a report that convincingly argues building the Haitian state should be central to reconstruction efforts. This includes the development of skilled, trained, and properly organized government personnel and management systems within and across Ministries. The report suggests that, at least through the medium term, the Haitian government should contract out health and education services, monitoring and regulating but providing no direct services itself. It also notes the importance of developing the capacity and accountability of the Haitian National Police. A summary is copied below and the full report is attached.
I sometimes see articles in small town newspapers about churches or schools sending food to Haiti. The intention is good, but the impact is not - this is not how to promote food security. Project Medishare takes a different approach by fighting hunger, creating jobs, and supporting the local economy at the same time. Its Akamil factory, once operational, will produce fortified and highly nutritious food, from locally purchased ingredients, for malnourished children, pregnant women, and people living with tuberculosis and/or HIV/AIDS. My hope is that this facility will be the first of many. If you'd like to support this important effort, a link to Project Medishare's project fund-raising site is below.
Last week Bourik (BOS) found some feed he best not munch on, chrysopogon zizanioides. This plant, although not nearly as hefty as the volume of mangos exported from Haiti, estimated to be well over 4,500,000 pounds annually is still a lucrative crop.