JOVENEL MOÏSE, President of Haiti, said that the General Assembly faces two underlying questions: how to optimize mechanisms for international peace and security; and how international solidarity can be translated into a more effective system. Combating poverty and promoting human rights are inexorably linked and abject poverty is a denial of human dignity. Poverty alleviation must be at the heart of the United Nations. Furthermore, climate change must be a top priority for international leaders; the Paris Agreement was a major milestone. However, funding is insufficient to respond to challenges and States most affected by violent weather phenomena are those who contribute least to greenhouse gas emissions.
One year after the closing of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti, the Government continues to work to strengthen democracy and respect for human rights, he continued. No efforts are spared in creating a stable environment conducive to investment and growth. Haiti is implementing innovative approaches to make progress possible for all Haitians. However, economic growth is apathetic and exerts a heavy burden on development and peacekeeping programmes.
Haiti is also confronting the painful requirement to continue financing Government subsidies for petrol prices, he said, recalling that Haitians voiced their political discontent in recent violent protests, highlighting how fragile Haiti’s progress is. Without appropriate, long‑term assistance structural reforms are unsustainable and such reforms will not occur overnight or under rigid limitations imposed by international partners. He attributed recent public anger to narrow approaches to financial assistance and the inability of Haiti to obtain the forms of aid it requires.
He restated his commitment to spare no effort to guide the country towards sustainable development, including the fight against corruption in all its forms. The Government is endeavouring to immediately improve the livelihood of the most vulnerable members of society, improve the business climate, promote job creation, strengthen the capacity of the judicial system and re-establish its armed forces. Haiti is at a crossroads, he said, appealing for international partners to demonstrate solidarity with Haitians.
Peace, development and security go hand in hand and require long term investment, he stressed, asking how sustainable development can be achieved with inadequate national infrastructure, including for the provision of potable tap water. He also noted that 15,000 classrooms are needed to provide children with access to quality education and 122 health centres are necessary to overcome lack of access to services in communities across the country.