On Sunday, December 12, 2021, the Montana Accord monitoring office swore in the national transitional council, Conseil national de transition (CNT), a 52-member committee composed of nominations from political parties and civil society organizations and charged to elect the two heads of the transitional government. The committee will elect a transitional president and prime minister. According to Joseph Lambert, president of the one-third senate currently active, the installation of the transition committee members is a step in the right direction, in a tweet he sent out this Sunday. According to the lawmaker, choosing these people to head the transition is a move that can only bring back some normality in the country. He went on to say that his participation in the ceremony is an act of good faith meant to promote peaceful coexistence. To Camille Chalmers, spokesperson for the party Rasin kan pèp la, the caliber of people selected, the rigorous nature of the selection process and the entire composition of the transitional council inspire hope in the Haitian people that there can be a break from the existing order. It is a good step that all democratic and progressive sectors of the country should support because putting in place this council shows that it is not a family business or group of friends or yet still, business as usual. It is a very broad framework of very great ideological diversity where everyone is willing to come together to lay the foundations for a true nation building. The steps taken thus far have been hailed as historic, as the objective is to overcome the hurdles that are currently destroying the country and its people. The committee will proceed to validate the roadmap for the government and oversee all nominations for the transitional government.
In related news, the US representative in Haiti, Kenneth Merten has called for an agreement of agreements to unblock the political stalemate in the country. In an interview on télé Ginen radio, the diplomat confirmed that according to their analysis of the events in the country, the country needs an accord of accords, because it is sorely needed. The US is encouraging national actors to follow this path to move the country forward. He cited the newly formed transitional council and the newly appointed cabinet of Prime Minister Ariel Henry as positive signs that things can now begin to move in the right direction.
Elsewhere, more than 50 people died when a tanker truck carrying fuel exploded near Samaria on the eastern part of Haiti’s second largest city, Cap-Haïtien. The wounded are hospitalized in tents in local hospitals because of lack of available beds and materials. Health workers are crying out for lack of gas, serum, and other materiel necessary to provide first aid to the victims. The total number of victims has not yet been accounted. According to the Deputy mayor of Cap-Haïtien, Patrick Almonor, more than 20 houses have burnt down and there’s not yet been an assessment of the people who may have been burnt in the houses. According to sources, the fire started around midnight and the city does not have the capacity to deal with the level of emergency and medical care required. It was alleged that the tanker had capsized and a lot of people in the vicinity took the opportunity to collect some of the fuel, a very dangerous action and when the explosion occurred, they had no chance. Prime Minister Ariel Henry has declared three (3) days of mourning across the nation, while presenting his and the entire Haitian people’s condolences to the families. He announced that mobile hospitals would be deployed to the area soon.
Elsewhere, former Justice and Interior Minister Rockfeller Vincent who was expected to appear at Judge Garry Orélien’s chambers on Monday, December 13, 2021, failed to show up. The minister was expected to appear before the judge charged with prosecuting the dossier involving the assassination of former President Jovenel Moïse. His lawyers, citing security concerns asked the judge to allow him to testify via teleconference.
The security situation is the main malaise afflicting the country, it is becoming increasing difficult to know if there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. Just this afternoon, four (4) trucks carrying goods were hijacked by armed bandits in Martissant, at the southern entrance to the capital, Port-au-Prince, despite the truce announced by the armed gangs, following weeks of killings, kidnappings, and gunshot wounds. Last Saturday, three members of the same family, including a 9-year-old, were kidnapped at Delmas 41, with the kidnappers demanding huge sums of money as ransom.