Saturday 26 September 2015

DOMINICA: Dominica Cancels Music Festival

Dominica’s government today announced the cancellation of the island nation’s annual World Creole Music Festival in the wake of the devastation caused earlier this month by tropical storm Erika.

Private sector entrepreneurs operating in Dominican have announced they will stage a series of relief concerts in place of the canceled festival, government officials said in a statement.

The relief events will take place from Oct. 30 to Nov. 1, the days originally designated for the Creole Music festival, supporting the island’s reconstruction efforts by enabling “economic activity” in areas impacted by the storm. “The government must re-prioritize following Tropical Storm Erika,” said Robert Tonge, Dominica’s minister for tourism and urban renewal.

“We must focus on rebuilding communities and infrastructure, and providing housing for those who were displaced,” he said. “We are grateful to the private sector for stepping in to ensure that Dominica’s strong music heritage will continue and bring additional relief efforts to [the country].”

Tropical storm Erika killed 30 Dominica residents and caused “monumental” damage to communities, buildings, roads and infrastructure across the country. Government officials estimate recovery costs will reach $220 million.

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