Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Barbados and the rest of the Caribbean are at this moment mobilising resources to assit the people of Haiti, following the massive 7.0 earthquake which occured yesterday. So far, reports are that 20% of the island's housing stock has been destroyed. Even the Presidential Palace has been seriously damaged.
Here in Bim Starcom Network and the OCM network are arranging a radiothon on Saturday to raise funds. I'll post up the information on the numbers to call as soon as I get them.
Prime Minister David Thompson held a hastily convened press conference to address this tragedy. Here's what he had to say:
It is with a sense of profound sadness that Barbadians learnt of the earthquake that struck the nation of Haiti yesterday, January 12, 2009. While the world is only now coming to understand the scale of destruction and loss of life as the first pictures and reports are being seen and filed, initial assessments indicate that Haiti has again suffered a calamity of horrendous proportions. This comes at a time when Haiti is still recovering from a series of hurricanes which struck that nation two years ago.
At this painful and trying moment for all Haitians, I extend, on behalf of the people of Barbados, my deepest sympathy to the Government and people of Haiti and especially to those who have suffered the loss of loved ones.
I want also to give every assurance of Barbados’ support for Haiti during this difficult period as it seeks to cope with and recover from the aftermath of the earthquake. I have already been in consultation with the Heads of other CARICOM countries, particularly the Chairman, to ensure that an adequate and meaningful response to this disaster is also made by the Caribbean Community. The pain of this disaster is felt throughout the Community, and we will do whatever is in our power to show our support and solidarity with our fellow CARICOM state as it faces this terrible trauma. Our prayers and thoughts continue to be with the Government and people of Haiti during this trying time.
For this tragedy to occur after suffering four hurricanes in 2008, it's just too much. My prayers are with you, mes freres at soeurs haitiens.
Image: Damage to the Presidential Palace following the earthquake