Dominica PM thanks St Kitts-Nevis for post-Maria help

An OECS delegation in St Kitts and Nevis after Hurricane Irma. Prime Minister Timothy Harris, centre, with Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit to his left.

The prime minister of Dominica has thanked St Kitts and Nevis for the humanitarian response in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.

The Nature Island was pummelled on the night of 18 September, leaving many dead, thousands homeless and thousands destroyed.

St Kitts and Nevis responded by pledging EC$1 million for recovery.

In addition, the federation’s Robert L Bradshaw Airport was opened as a staging platform for relief efforts into Dominica, all four hospitals in St Kitts and Nevis were made available to tackle the health crisis and displaced students were offered enrolment in St Kitts and Nevis schools to continue their education.

In a letter, Dominica’s Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit wrote: “Your dispatch of officers of the St Kitts and Nevis Police Force for security duties and the contributions of materials and supplies by the private and public sectors of St Kitts and Nevis have been invaluable contributions to our emergency response in the aftermath of the hurricane.

“Through you we also wish to thank the people of St Kitts and Nevis for opening their homes to Dominican families seeking temporary relocation following the devastating effects of the hurricane.”

The response, Skerrit added, was testament to Caribbean compassion.

“Importantly, your personal expressions of concern at the situation in Dominica have served to reinforce our confidence that as small states, and as CARICOM member states, we confront our challenges together.

“And as problematic as they are, natural disasters [such] as Hurricane Maria also serve to strengthen our affinity and hence the Caribbean family.”

Category five Hurricane Maria, the 13th named hurricane of the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season, caused billions of dollars worth of damage to Dominica’s infrastructure.

This included extensive damage to roads and public buildings, such as schools, stores and churches.

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