P J Patterson blasted UN for invoking "legal immunity" over cholera in Haiti

The former Prime Minister of Jamaica, P J Patterson has cried shame on the United Nations and their recent invocation of their right to legal immunity after the deaths of thousands of Haitians from a cholera outbreak caused by UN aid workers on site in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake.


The decision by the UN, announced weeks ago by the Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon, has been met with censure by many as the organization, in taking this step after a suit was filed against them, has denied the families of the thousands who have suffered any claim to damages sustained from the epidemic.

After the 2010 earthquake, the poorly drained camp of aid workers from Nepal, a country with an endemic cholera problem, contaminated the water supply of millions of Haitians. The resulting epidemic has claimed the lives of over 8,000 Haitians and resulted in a cry for compensation the UN has finally rebuffed.

"It is simply appalling, a most reprehensible behavior," Patterson said in a recent interview, referencing the fact that the decision by the UN was made with the understanding that scientific evidence proves the outbreak was caused by their peacekeepers, as the strain of cholera found is directly linked to the Nepalese workers.

Patterson, a sometimes 'special advisor' to Caricom, says he's aware of UN special representative, former US President Bill Clinton's presence in Haiti, but states it is not his place to say what stance Clinton or the Caribbean Community should take to the news. He also states that the claim to immunity is 'an excuse to avoid using its resources and influence to appropriately respond to the... victims and their families.'

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Read more: Cholera, Ban Ki-moon, jamaica, united Nations, Immunity, Patterson, Nepal, International

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