In response to questions received this morning, I can confirm that we have received a letter from UN Human Rights experts on issues related to cholera in Haiti. We are reviewing the concerns raised in this letter and will be responding in due course.
Since taking office, the Secretary-General has been strongly committed to supporting the people of Haiti and the fight against cholera. He reiterates the United Nations’ deep regrets for the loss of life and suffering caused by the cholera epidemic.
Since the introduction of the New Approach to Cholera in Haiti, in 2016, we have partnered with Haiti to defeat cholera and have seen progress. Haiti has not had a single laboratory confirmed case of cholera in nearly 15 consecutive months. The Secretary-General welcomes this significant progress towards eliminating the disease. Efforts are now accelerating to achieve another important milestone: three years with no laboratory confirmed cases of cholera, the time required to declare Haiti cholera-free. The two-track approach prioritizes the emergency response to eliminate the transmission of cholera, and support for those most affected by the disease.
Since the beginning of the outbreak, the International community has invested over US$ 705 million to fight cholera, in support of the Government’s National Plan, including more than US$139 million mobilized by the UN and its agencies. Investments made in Haiti’s health, epidemiological, water and sanitation systems to combat the disease are now playing a key role in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. The United Nations’ joint efforts with the Government of Haiti, and intensive engagement with urban and rural communities to quickly track, test and treat cases of cholera have always had the additional goal of building resilience and a stronger community health system.
The United Nations remain committed to helping Haiti and its people build a brighter future. The Secretary-General urges Member States to demonstrate their solidarity with the people of Haiti by increasing their contributions to eliminate cholera and provide assistance to those affected.
Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General