It seems uncommonly cruel and unjust that a nation as devastated as Haiti is facing the threat of a cholera epidemic even as it struggles to cope with the aftermath of a tropical storm.
As of Wednesday, cholera had claimed at least 583 lives and sickened more than 9,000, according to the Health Ministry. Frantic aid workers are fighting to keep the outbreak from spreading into congested earthquake survivor camps in Port-au-Prince.
This is misery piled upon misery, part of the burden of history in a country where natural disasters are practically a chronic affliction. But this time around Haiti's problems have been compounded by the inexcusably slow pace of recovery and reconstruction.
Ten months after the earthquake, more than one million people still live under plastic sheeting, vulnerable to rainstorms and other menaces. Security in these camps is woefully lacking.
Much of the devastation, meanwhile, has not been cleaned up. Mountains of rubble are evident wherever the earthquake hit. So far, only 5 percent has been removed, far short of the amount that could reasonably have been expected. Bureaucratic delays in disbursing available funds are a major reason for the lack of progress.
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