Martelly’s plans for Haiti(FP)
By Dawne Parris in St Lucia | Fri, July 06, 2012 - 12:35 PM
He still has another six months before he takes over as chairman of CARICOM, but Haiti’s President Michel Martelly already has plans to ensure that under his leadership his French island becomes fully integrated into the 15-member grouping.
Under the rotation schedule, Martelly will be at the helm of CARICOM from January 1 to June 30, 2013.
“I intend to do the job well . . . I have big dreams I hope I can make them real and take this opportunity to make sure that Haiti is fully integrated, that the language barrier is no longer a problem and we understand what CARICOM means to us and what we mean to CARICOM,” he said yesterday during a break in the leaders’ caucus at the 33rd Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government.
Martelly expressed specific concern about the challenges facing Haitians who want to travel to other CARICOM member states.
“Haiti has been a part of CARICOM for the past ten years and yet our people are not allowed to travel without a visa in the other countries which are members. Every other country has that ability . . . and these are things we want to change.
“But also we want CARICOM to be stronger, to do more things, gain more respect. I’m not saying that I have all the solutions but I will for sure surround myself with the best experts and a great team to see how we can, again as we did it in music, as we did it at the time of elections, as we are currently doing it in Haiti, see if we can mark our passage in CARICOM,” added the Haitian leader.
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