By Elikya Ngoma
African People’s Socialist Party
AYITI––Over 850 (and counting) Africans lost their lives to Hurricane Matthew—a category four hurricane with sustained winds of 145 mph—on Tuesday, October 4, 2016. Thousands are left homeless.
The hurricane hit Southern Haiti––“Le Sud”––one of Haiti’s ten departments. Cities in the South include Leogane, Petit-Goave, Jeremie and Les Cayes, all of which have been severely damaged by the raging waters. A key bridge in Ti Goave has been destroyed, keeping the most damages parts of southern Haiti isolated.
Prior to the hurricane, Port-au-Prince—the country’s capital—became a major safety concern. This is where the earthquake struck on January 12, 2010, killing hundreds of thousands of people, injuring at least 300,000 and leaving more than 1.5 million homeless.
Our pain, white power’s gain
When news first spread about the earthquake in 2010, people everywhere donated money to major charity organizations. The American Red Cross (ARC) and the Clinton Foundation were two of the organizations that received the most money, raising $500 million and over $30 million, respectively.
It was revealed that with half a billion dollars, the Red Cross only built six houses—if you can even call them that. The Clintons, on the other hand, pocketed the money and have no response to where the money has gone.
It has been six years since the earthquake and an estimated 55,000 Haitians are still living in tents. Disgustingly enough, both of these scamming organizations have asked for donations in response to Hurricane Matthew hitting Haiti.
Rightfully so, they received heavy backlash from various people on social media. It’s clear to us that they see these disasters as just another ‘come up.’ This is why we Africans in Haiti must be able to exercise our right to self-determination and self-reliance!
Haiti is not poor; it is being looted!
Whenever colonial media speaks about Haiti, the first thing they mention is that Haiti is “the poorest country in the western Hemisphere,” without ever acknowledging why that is.
Africans in Haiti are still paying for our victory as the first successful revolutionary liberation struggle of African or oppressed people, in the world. Defeating three European superpowers—the English, Spanish and the French—the Africans in Haiti stunned the world when we took freedom into our own hands.
Since then, Haiti was to be made an example of to all other Africans. Haiti was forced—by the U.S., Britain and France—to pay reparations to France for its loss of property. The property were the Africans themselves!
Haiti paid France $90 billion in today’s gold prices. The payments took 122 years, ending in 1947. Haiti’s Africans face attack after attack, placed on us by the U.S. and its allies, making it nearly impossible for economic growth.
Some of these include the sugar quota placed in the 1980s, being forced to drop the tariffs on imported subsidized U.S. rice—a move made by Bill Clinton—and being forced to keep the minimum wage at $.24 an hour instead of raising it to $.61 an hour by Hillary Clinton in 2009.
Colonialism at fault!
Hurricane Matthew alone is not what took many African lives; the lack of proper infrastructure also played a major role. Many of the Africans are living in slums, in shack houses with corrugated pieces of metal as roofs.
Deforestation and the lack of a natural defense against aggressive weather is another thing that caused so many lives to be taken. Haitian farmers are cutting down trees to turn into charcoal to sell and raise resources, because of the various agricultural policies placed on us by imperialist powers to keep the economy from flourishing.
To those colonial and neocolonialist leaders, as well as parasitic organizations expressing concern for Africans in Haiti, we say “hands off of Haiti!” Hands off Haiti, hands off Africa and hands off Africans wherever we were forcefully displaced on this planet!
We call on all Africans to join the All African People’s Development and Empowerment Project (AAPDEP), today! We Africans must be able to build to prepare for and protect ourselves against any natural disasters.
AAPDEP’s mission is “to collectivize the vast skills of Africans around the world in order to establish community-based development projects that improve the quality of life for African people everywhere while promoting self-reliance and self-determination as key to genuine, sustainable development.”
Donate to AAPDEP’s Black Ankh Project at www.DevelopmentForAfrica.org!