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Expert voices concern on how aid to Haiti will be coordinated

As the international community pledges millions in emergency funds for stricken Haitians, the focus should be on how to coordinate the aid, Rolando Tomasini of the Humanitarian Research Group, INSEAD Social Innovation Center tells FRANCE 24.

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Search and rescue

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"At this point most of the efforts will be concentrated on search and rescue, but from a logistical perspective what we"'re entering into is a critical phase of co-ordination. We've seen the images, people have been on the streets for the last two days, there's a lot of stress about the situation that is happening. Resources are very limited and also the infrastructure is heavily hit. As international aid is coming in we are going to be starting to wonder about how all these resources are going to be utilised to make sure that there are no bottlenecks created by competition among the different actors that are coming into the theatre."

Coordinate International aid

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"In a traditional setting either the country or the UN would be leading the efforts because they have the local knowledge to say what roads can be used, which logistical resources can be put at hand. But in this case both actors have been heavily hit by the damage. So the question is who will have and acquire that local knowledge rather quickly, in order to co-ordinate and gain the legitimacy on the ground? To co-ordinate the actors that are coming from different countries... I mean we've seen a great outpouring of support, but these are coming from governments, militaries, religious groups, private companies, individuals. "Now picture all those people giving themselves a rendez-vous on the ground - how will that be co-ordinated? And that's the issue".
 

A long term issue

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"We look at previous disasters, we see that we're giving it plenty of air time at the moment, and it's getting a lot of attention - not enough because of the needs that we have- but the risk is that over the next few weeks we will get desensitised to the images, we will not follow through through the next stages of building a nation that needs so much help."

 

 

 

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