Kanaval 2018, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Kanaval 2018, Port-au-Prince, Haiti

The mayor of two cities including the capital, Port au Prince, have announced the cancellation of the annual Carnival celebrations citing the safety of revellers and the prevailing socio-political situation in the French-speaking Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries.

The Mayor of Port au Prince, Ralph Youri Chevry, and his counterpart in Croix-des-Bouquets, Rony Colin, said they were unable to guarantee the safety of persons attending the Carnival because of the situation where opposition parties have been staging street demonstrations calling for the removal of President Jovenel Moise from office.

“The Port-au-Prince Municipal Administration has therefore decided to cancel the pre-carnival and carnival festivities to take place on February 24 and March 3 and 5, 2019,” Youri Chevry said.

Police said that earlier this week, one of their colleagues was shot and killed after he was accosted by a group of men who had demanded that he and his two colleagues hand over their service weapons.

They said the incident occurred in Martissant, south of the capital and that Simon Jackson, an officer 1 of the National Police of Haiti (PNH), was shot while on his way to work in the company of the two other police officers in a private vehicle.

“It’s when Simon refused to give his weapon, that one of the bandits coldly shot him,” said one of his colleagues who was traveling with him, and who handed over his weapon to the attackers.

Police said they are also investigating two more deaths on Wednesday in the same area. Among those killed wa a driver of a public transport.

Meanwhile, at least 62 legislators have adopted a resolution that they say would help resolve the crisis in Haiti.

In the resolution, the deputies call on the government to continue the dialogue with the various stakeholders as well as to take all the necessary measures to restore order and public security.

They also want the authorities to take all necessary measures to curb the depreciation of the Gourde against the United States dollar by fixing with the Bank of the Republic of Haiti (BRH) a cap not exceeding the exchange rate of 60 gourdes for one US dollar.

They are also calling on the authorities to enforce the law on the price of petroleum products and to set, with the Superior Council of Wages (CSS), as soon as possible, a new minimum wage not less than 600 Gourdes (One Gourde=US$0.012 cents).

The resolution also calls on the authorities to “take all necessary measures to reduce the price of agricultural inputs, including fertilizer, and to subsidize essential products for a period of six to 12 months, as soon as possible, until the revival of agricultural production,” as well as “to reduce by 30 per cent the budget of the Chamber of Deputies in the National Budget and to allocate them to different sectors, such as agriculture, education, public health, etc…” Continue reading

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