April 15, 2024 05:17 (IST)
Follow us:
facebook-white sharing button
twitter-white sharing button
instagram-white sharing button
youtube-white sharing button
'What else is Congress doing other than looting?': Kangana Ranaut in Himachal Pradesh | Iran could attack Israel sooner than later, warns US President Joe Biden | Amid unemployment, inflation issues, PM Modi's leadership likely to help his third consecutive term at govt: Survey | AAP to support INDIA bloc 'unconditionally' in UP for Lok Sabha election | Amid threats from Iran, Israel launches massive strike on Gaza

In Haiti, Ban calls for greater efforts to improve water and sanitation, end cholera epidemic

India Blooms News Service | | 15 Jul 2014, 10:03 am
New York, July 15 (IBNS) UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday called for intensified efforts to ensure access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation in Haiti, as he launched a new United Nations-supported initiative and met with families affected by cholera.


“As Secretary-General of the United Nations, I want to assure you that the United Nations and its partners are strongly committed to ending the epidemic as quickly as possible. We are making progress, and we will continue to pursue with all our energy our goal of freeing the country from the disease,”  Ban said at a church service in the village of Los Palmas.

“I know that the epidemic has caused much anger and fear. I know that the disease continues to affect an unacceptable number of people,” he stated. “Whatever I say on Monday will not lessen the despair you have felt over the loss of your loved ones.”

There have been around 703,000 suspected cases of cholera and an estimated 8,500 deaths reported since the beginning of the epidemic in October 2010.

The UN has initiated a system-wide effort to support the Haitian Government to fight the disease. In December 2012,  Ban launched an initiative for the elimination of cholera in Haiti and the Dominican Republic that focuses on prevention, treatment and education, as well as infrastructure planning for the long-term.

Concerted Haitian and international efforts have succeeded in significantly reducing the toll of the epidemic. There has been a 74 per cent reduction of the number of cases in the first five months of 2014 compared to the same period last year.

However, despite the progress made, structural issues, including weak water, sanitation and health systems, enable cholera, acute diarrhoea or other waterborne diseases to persist.

While in Los Palmas, the Secretary-General launched, with Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe, the country’s “Total Sanitation Campaign” which aims to scale up sanitation and hygiene interventions in rural areas.

Ban called the campaign “a development milestone” for the country, where half the population lacks access to adequate sanitation syste “The need for this step is clear.”

Supported by the UN, the campaign aims to raise sanitation standards and improve health conditions at the modes cost of only $4 per person.

The Secretary-General said the UN stands ready to help expand the initiative to the most remote areas and to places where cholera persists. Together with the World Bank, the UN will assist the Haitian Government in targeting an initial 20 communes affected by the disease, covering 3 million people within the next five years.

“Cholera rates are declining and the battle is slowly being won. We must, however, intensify these efforts. And we must focus on the wider quest to ensure access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation,” he said.

“I call upon all of Haiti’s international partners to support this initiative and help us expand it to every community in Haiti. With commitment, vision and solidarity, the progress we seek – and that Haitians deserve – can be ours. You can count on me and the United Nations to do our part.”
 

Support Our Journalism

We cannot do without you.. your contribution supports unbiased journalism

IBNS is not driven by any ism- not wokeism, not racism, not skewed secularism, not hyper right-wing or left liberal ideals, nor by any hardline religious beliefs or hyper nationalism. We want to serve you good old objective news, as they are. We do not judge or preach. We let people decide for themselves. We only try to present factual and well-sourced news.

Support objective journalism for a small contribution.