CARICOM and Haiti
The Editor, Sir:
In the crevasse of hopelessness there is still hope to be found. When all hope fades, the last twine of it, like dying roots with one single thread and the aid of Mother Nature, hope again springs forth.
I agree absolutely that CARICOM states must formulate an answer to Haiti's medium- and long-term needs. There has never been a time, apart from now, when common ground and common sense must prevail. Furthermore, historically, it is clear to see how our own lack of action has contributed to Haiti's compounded issues. Do we stand by once again, without backbone, and witness the intervention of Western countries playing a leading and directive role in that proud country's future?
Those of us who seek a better relationship/partnership in advancing our aspiration in the CARICOM family would do well to realise that working on things which unite us will strengthen us and our institutions to tackle more troublesome issues in years to come. We must act. We must lead.
I do suggest, however, that we must look up in our Yellow Pages (perhaps those old directories are covered with dust, so we must unashamedly wipe them off) the names of old political veterans and call them back to service.
These are extraordinary times in Haiti. CARICOM, with the consent of all shades of the Haitian leadership, must declare a state of emergency in that country. A government of national unity should be formed under the auspices of CARICOM and backing from the United Nations. Under such arrangements, key positions, such as law and order, must be in the hands of CARICOM, and essential in that component are units from Caribbean countries and some other Creole-speaking countries such as Mauritius.
Democracy (one man one vote) as we know it must be suspended for a time. In its place, a combination of Haitian/CARICOM institutions should be set up that would spearhead reconstruction and development in Haiti. This is by no means a takeover; the Haitian people would never allow it. This is just a matter of arrangement, bringing Haiti into the family fold so that stability and sustainability could be established.
There is hope out of these ruins, and, with it, we bring optimism.
I am, etc.,