More Than a Million Haitians Given Tents: UN Officials
By Dialogo April 13, 2010More than a million Haitians, about 90 percent of those made homeless in January's devastating earthquake, have received tents or other means of shelter, UN officials said Thursday. At the current pace, all Haitians who lost their homes in quake will have some form of shelter by May 1, said officials from the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). OCHA has been racing to get shelter for Haitians still without homes ahead of the start of the rainy season. Hundreds of Haitians have died in past years in their flood-prone country, swept away by landslides or drowned in flooding. The UN assessment came one day after officials announced plans to move 8,000 Haitians out of a makeshift camp to a new site. People left homeless by the earthquake will be moved from the Petionville golf club, which is prone to mudslides and flooding, to a new location 20 kilometers (12 miles) away. Around 40 percent of the thousands of homes that structural engineers have already inspected have been declared fit for occupation, OCHA said. The 7.0 magnitude quake that struck Haiti on January 12 killed more than 220,000 people and left 1.3 million more homeless.