Port-au-Prince, 16 February 2006— UNICEF today congratulated Rene Preval on his election as President of Haiti, and hailed his renewed commitment to children.
President-elect Preval was one of 23 candidates who committed to a political platform for children when they signed a white paper called The Political Agenda for Children on 2 February, prior to the country’s election.
UNICEF’s representative in Haiti, Adriano Gonzalez-Regueral congratulated Preval, and said that the Agenda laid down a road-map for to lift Haitian children from a cycle of poverty and neglect.
“Everyone who works in Haiti knows what must be done for Haitian children,” said Gonzalez-Regueral. “Mr. Preval’s comments show that he is serious about changing Haiti’s future. We will work with his Government and all democratic institutions and social, economic and political forces to ensure that Haiti has the human and financial resources and the badly needed international support to get the job done.”
The Political Agenda for Children is a comprehensive analysis of the situation of children in Haiti. It specifies actions in the areas of child protection, education, child and maternal health and HIV/AIDS, and proposes a breakdown of responsibilities for the national assembly, the government, civil society, the private sector, local leaders and parents.
“UNICEF is a non-partisan organization, but we support policies in favor of children,” said Gonzalez-Regueral “We will mobilize resources and continuously monitor the situation of children with the government, the parliament and the Haitian people and propose technical assistance to help effectively implement public policies and programmes. Mr Preval’s stated intention to remove weapons from children and replace them with books and pens opens a historical opportunity that we must seize.”
For more information, please contact:
Sylvana Nzirorera, UNICEF Haiti, 509 402-2674