The “largest humanitarian event” in Haiti since the devastating January 2010 earthquake is how United Nations (UN) Secretary General’s deputy special representative for Haiti, Mourad Wahba, described the devastation wreaked by Category 4 Hurricane ‘Matthew’. The hurricane struck on 4 October, five days before restaged presidential and partial legislative elections were due to take place. At the time of writing, the international media cited unofficial reports which put the death toll at over 1,000, with an estimated 2.1m people affected (out of a total population of 10.8m), and fears rife regarding a resurgence of cholera. With the provisional electoral council (CEP) forced to suspend the elections again and no new date set at the time of writing, the challenges facing both the interim government led by President Jocelerme Privert and his eventual successor, could not be greater.
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