Skerrit compares Dominica to war zone

Barbados Today:Dominica’s Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit addressed the United Nations General Assembly on Saturday, calling on countries around the world to lend “rescue and rebuilding equipment” to his decimated country which he said, “reflects a zone of war”.

“With physical and emotional difficulty, I have left my bleeding nation to be with you here today because these are the moments for which the United Nations exists,” Skerrit said in an address which lasted 17 minutes.

The Dominican leader used his address to focus on the challenges faced by Caribbean countries as a result of climate change and appealed for help to rebuild his country which is home to 72,000 people.

“In the case of Dominica, it has been only two years since we lost lives and endured substantial physical and infrastructural damage from the ravages of the floods and mud slides of Tropical Storm Erika,” he said.

“To deny climate change is to procrastinate while the earth sinks; it is to deny a truth we have just lived.

“It is to mock thousands of my compatriots who in a few hours, without a roof over their heads, will watch the night descend on Dominica in fear of sudden mud slides and what the next hurricane may bring,” Skerrit added.

He pointed out that Dominica and the rest of the Caribbean did not start this war against nature, neither did they provoke it but the war had come to them.

And he said there is little time left for action.

“While the big countries talk, the small island nations suffer. We need action and we need it now. We in the Caribbean do not produce greenhouse gases or sulphate aerosols. We do not pollute or overfish our oceans. We have made no contribution to global warming that can move the needle. But yet, we are among the main victims on the frontline,” Skerrit said.

“In the Commonwealth of Dominica, we have long pursued and respected an existence that preserves our Little Eden.

“But what is our reality at this moment?  Pure devastation, as Dominicans bear the brunt of climate change. We are shouldering the consequences of the actions of others.  Actions that endanger our very existence and all for the enrichment of a few elsewhere.

“We dug graves today in Dominica. We buried loved ones yesterday and I am sure that as I return home tomorrow, we shall discover additional fatalities, as a consequence of this encounter. Our homes are flattened. Our buildings roofless. Our water pipes smashed and road infrastructure destroyed. Our hospital is without power and schools have disappeared beneath the rubble. Our crops are uprooted. Where there was green there is now only dust and dirt,” he said.

Hurricane Maria hit Dominica as a category five storm on Monday leaving 15 confirmed deaths and more than 20 missing and presumed dead.

“The stars have fallen. Eden is broken,” Skerrit said.

“The nation of Dominica has come here to declare an international humanitarian emergency. One that is centred in Dominica but also encompasses many of our neighbours including our sister isle, Antigua which had to evacuate its citizens from Barbuda.

“The time has come for the international community to make a stand and to decide whether it will be shoulder to shoulder with those suffering the ravages of climate change worldwide. Whether we can mitigate the consequences of unprecedented increases in sea temperatures and levels; whether to help us rebuild sustainable livelihoods; or whether the international community will merely show some pity now, and then flee; relieved to know that this time it was not you.”

The Prime Minister called on the UNGA to let these extraordinary events unleash the innovation and creativity of global citizens to spark a new paradigm of green economic development that stabilizes and reverses the consequences of human-induced global warming.

“We will rebuild our Garden of Eden again for our children and for future generations,” Skerrit promised.

But right now, he said the country needs all the things required in a natural disaster.

“We need water, food and emergency shelter. We need roads, bridges and new infrastructure. But we also need capabilities of delivery,” he said.

“I call upon those with substantial military capacities to lend us the rescue and rebuilding equipment that may be standing idle waiting for a war; Let Dominica today be that war, because currently, our landscape reflects a zone of war.

“The battle we face has brought us to our knees. We need resources now so that we may move with purpose to the task of rebuilding our beautiful island home.”

15 Comments

  1. Anonymous
    September 23, 2017 at 7:10 pm Reply

    Well said

  2. Anonymous
    September 23, 2017 at 7:44 pm Reply

    Tell them Mr. Prime minister.insteard of starting a war with North Korea ,start a war on helping Dominica and the others who suffered from huricane maria and Irma.

  3. Anonymous
    September 23, 2017 at 10:59 pm Reply

    My dear comrade I am so proud of you. Bishop, Rosie, Odlum, Manley and rest are all proud of you as they look over you….. Go on Comrade Sko……. By the way you taught Allen how to read and have projection with a speech……

  4. Anonymous
    September 23, 2017 at 11:13 pm Reply

    I’m impressed… Well said!!!

  5. Anonymous
    September 24, 2017 at 12:26 am Reply

    Dominica don’t products OIL.

  6. Phedeline Nicholas
    September 24, 2017 at 8:18 am Reply

    People Jesus is about to usher His appearance. This old world is not our final home. We are living on borrowed time. God is and has been patient with the whole world, The Bible makes clear that in the last days Perilous Times will come, men shall be lovers of their own self, . Their minds will not be on the God of heaven. Satan knows that His time is short, therefore his purpose is to deceive the whole world with LIES “You can live as you want, eat as much as possible, , sleep with with who you want, PARTY, PARTY, PARTY, etc, etc. After all is said and done, God will take you straight to heaven, because He is so loving. People it didn’t didn’t work for the Angels that rebelled, do you think it will work for us who refuse to take heed. God is calling the whole world to repent. May God give us the grace to understand that the old world is not our final home. He has gone to prepare for us a better place where there will be peace forevermore. May we humble ourselves, repent, and say as Paul, “LORD,what would Though have me to do. Jesus is coming sooner than we think. IN THE LAST DAYS PERILOUS TIMES SHALL COME. SATAN KNOWS THAT, HE TREMBLES, therefore, he keeps or tries to keep everyone preoccupied , so He won’t go to HELL by Himself. Jesus is calling us back to the OLD TIME RELIGION. WON’T YOU GIVE A CHANCE?

  7. Phedeline Nicholas
    September 24, 2017 at 8:33 am Reply

    Mr Prime Minister, we are doing out best to help our people in DA. In the meantime let us not forget that while we occupy and rebuild, this is not our final home. Let us bear in mind that we all strangers and pilgrims, looking forward for a Better County, who’s Builder and Maker is God. He is longing to have fellowship with His dear children. God bless

  8. June Looby Moore
    September 24, 2017 at 10:56 am Reply

    So very proud of my West Indian heritage! Very articulate!

  9. JoAnn
    September 24, 2017 at 1:08 pm Reply

    With this being said, my heart and pray goes out to my sister isle Dominica. I am proud of its prime minister, to stand along side the big countries and plead his cause, on behalf of his country. My people, when all else have failed you, remember there is one who has never left your side. You may have lost many but lets thank God that yet again we have endured. Renew your faith in
    God, thank him, praise him, rejoice in him. God bless you all. We in St.Lucia are praying for you.

  10. 666 - No Political Affiliation.
    September 24, 2017 at 1:22 pm Reply

    This man is addicted to power, and has made Dominica his little fiefdom. He brings in planeload of ppl from the diaspora to vote for him every election. Mother Nature had enough of you, so resign and let someone else lead the people to prosperity, you have Dominica the OECS’ Land of Handouts.’
    You have failed the people!

    1. Anonymous
      September 24, 2017 at 9:06 pm Reply

      Jackass

  11. Anonymous
    September 24, 2017 at 2:15 pm Reply

    God is in control…..let him be praise

  12. Hilaire
    September 24, 2017 at 2:19 pm Reply

    It was an extremely well delivered address.. No one cud have said it better. Mr. Prime Minister you were placed in Dominica for such a time as this. As you said we will rise above this. Thank you sir for your strong leadership.God will see us thru. This too shall pass and we will rise

    1. Cassie
      September 24, 2017 at 7:11 pm Reply

      First of all my thoughts and prayers are with the people of Dominica .
      My husband is from Dominica as well so it hits home hard to see the devastation, he has not had any interactions with his family who is still there. It was just two years ago the country was rocked by disaster, let’s just all reach out and help those who are less fortunate , who has lost everything, let’s continue to live in Unity with each other, as the times are changing dramatically, my condolences to the families who has lost a love one , may God reach out his hand of Mercy upon Dominica as it awaits the help needed to become a Nation again .God bless

  13. Jay
    September 24, 2017 at 6:21 pm Reply

    We need to help each other as God would have us to do. For surely if you do not love your brother who you can physically see …how could you love God. The prime minister spoke well. The bigger countries need to put a delegation together with personnel and resources to help Dominica. Certainly they are well able to do it and to do it quickly.

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