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Briefing

Where does Haiti stand three years after its 7.0 earthquake?

After billions of dollars in aid spent to help Haiti 'build back better' from its devastating earthquake on Jan. 12, 2010, hundreds of thousands are still without homes.

- Ezra FieserCorrespondent

President Michel Martelly talks to reporters during a news conference, in this Dec. 10, 2012, photo, in North Miami Beach, Fla. (Alan Diaz/AP)

3. What role is the government playing?

After a postponed, controversial general election, Michel Martelly, a musician-turned-politician, took office as president in May 2011. Political turmoil followed – including five months without a prime minister – leaving the government sidelined from the reconstruction process. 

Just 10 percent of the $6 billion in aid has gone to the government. Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe recently told reporters that routing aid money to NGOs “weakened our institutions.”

That may be changing. The government and NGOs say they are working together more closely. “In 2010, there was very little [government] engagement,” Mr. Pugh says. “We see more capacity at the ministry level.… They’re taking an active leadership role.” 

"No country will get out of poverty living on charity," President Martelly's administration told The Christian Science Monitor. "True, Haiti still needs help, but Haitians need … jobs and sustainable development." 


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