UN Secretary General wants $40 million of unspent MINUSTAH money to fund cholera victims

Posted by AFP on Thursday, May 25, 2017 Under: Health
Le secrétaire général de l'ONU Antonio Guterres, le 17 mai 2017 à Strasbourg

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is proposing to pay some $ 40 million of unspent money by the peacekeepers stationed in Haiti to a fund to help victims of cholera in that country.

In a report to the UN General Assembly, due to be held in June, Guterres recommended a series of measures to address the serious funding problem of the aid fund.

It was planned to raise $ 400 million over two years, but only 2% of this was paid by the member states.

Mr Guterres relaunched all member countries by letter in February but without much success.

He therefore urged member countries to "consider voluntarily relinquishing" unspent money from the 2015-2016 budget of the UN mission in Haiti (Minustah), about $ 40.5 million, which would feed into the aid fund.

The Security Council decided in April to halt the peacekeepers' presence in Haiti in mid-October, which will be replaced by a small police force.

He also suggested appointing a "high-level envoy" to solicit voluntary contributions from countries.

The list of countries that have already joined the portfolio is short: UK, South Korea, France, Liechtenstein, India, Sri Lanka and Chile. That was $ 2.6 million as of April 20.

Canada and Japan have allocated about $ 7 million separately to help Haiti.

Some 9,500 people have died of cholera since the outbreak of the epidemic in 2010 and more than 800,000 have been infected.

Former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had been forced to apologize to Haitians when analyzes showed that cholera had been introduced into the country by Nepalese Helmets, dispatched after the 2010 devastating earthquake.

Ban Ki-moon "profoundly sorry" for U.N role in deadly cholera outbreak in Haiti

The United Nations, however, considers that it is not legally responsible for the situation, and invokes diplomatic immunity with regard to prosecutions related to this epidemic.

In : Health