Today is truly a sad day, one every Haitian would have hoped never to happen. The remembrance can’t be more frightened as we remember that horrific afternoon earthquake that stole more than a quarter million lives in the Haitian capital, Port-au-Prince. And a month later, things have eased up a bit, but the scars—physical and psychological—will remain for generations to come. Despite the Haitian government official figure of the death toll, which is now estimated at 230, 0000 without counting those buried in the cemeteries and those still buried beneath the rubble, the human suffering, the struggle to bring closer, the longing for the rebuilding effort could prove to be as catastrophic as the earthquake itself.
Haiti looks like a bird whose wings have been broken, severely paralyzed and unable to fly. But we can still hang on the glimmer of hope that keeps us going every day. With such outpouring of global support, with the resilience that always crafts our characters as Haitians and with the never-see-before determination to rebuild, one can only see brighter days AHEAD.
The painstaking task of rebuilding must begin while we bury our dead with dignity. The road ahead, without a doubt, will be bumpy. However, if our will to thrive above the rubble, our patriotism, our wholehearted love for the land of Dessalines MUST never whither. Remember, Haiti will not live if we’re not ready to sacrifice for it.
If there is a lesson we must learn from the past 9 years, when we absorbed 15 calamities, is the lesson that safety matters. We can’t rebuild under the old cliché: Pito nou led nou la (we might be irrelevant, but we’re here). We need to take into account that every life is precious, and human intelligence is the best natural resource for poor countries such as ours. We must be ready to fight for what we believe in, and what we believe in is the three fundamental rights ratified by the United Nations 4th Geneva Convention of which Haiti is a signatory: the right to a decent education, the right to a good health care and the right to a decent job.
We must be ready to do away with all obstacles that will stand in the way, including the impotent president who has yet to speak to the nation since the catastrophe and who has always bragged about his impotence.
The state bureaucracy must be made anew so honesty in public affairs will be norm, rather than the exception. Let’s not make the state bureaucratic machine the fast track for petit-bourgeois opportunists to reach the social and economic ladder. Let’s decentralize the country, so Port-au-Prince will never be the nerve center of operation. Placing the reins of power into one city was the creation of United States occupation as a mechanism to suppress mounting resistance to its military occupation.
Down with all traitors!
Let’s stand united to rebuild our beloved country!
Also see It’s official: Bill Clinton is the new Governor of Haiti