By Nolan Strong and Grouchy Greg Watkins allhiphop.com
Rapper and activist Wyclef Jean is calling upon fans to donate money to help the battered island of Haiti, which was hit with the largest earthquake ever recorded on the island today (January 12).
Jean is asking his 1,290,000 followers to donate $5 dollars to his Yele Haiti non-profit organization, which will send aid to the nation.
“Haiti today faced a natural disaster of unprecedented proportion, an earthquake unlike anything the country has ever experienced,” Wyclef told AllHipHop.com in a statement. “The magnitude 7.0 earthquake – and several very strong aftershocks – struck only 10 miles from Port-au-Prince. I cannot stress enough what a human disaster this is, and idle hands will only make this tragedy worse. The over 2 million people in Port-au-Prince tonight face catastrophe alone. We must act now.”
Clef asked fans to text “Yele” to 501501 to donate $5 to Yele Haiti, his non-profit organization that has provided aid and assistance to the country for over five years.
Haiti was rocked by a 7.0 magnitude earthquake today, causing widespread damage to the tiny Caribbean country.
To make matters worse there were five aftershocks, including two that were 5.9 and 5 .2 on the Richter Scale in the past hour and more are expected.
Over 2 million people in the main city of Port au Prince have been affected by the impact as the epicenter was just 10 miles southwest from the densely populated capital.
G-Unit rapper expressed concern for his family members on the island.
“Its a sad day for Haiti My thoughts and prayers are with everyone and there families. Bout 2 call my family,” Yayo Tweeted.
Numerous homes have been destroyed, a major hospital has completely collapsed and according to the latest reports, the presidential palace also suffered extensive damage.
The last time an earthquake close to this magnitude to hit Haiti occurred in 1751.
A series of tropical storms ravaged Haiti from 2004-2008 and severely damaged the country’s transportation infrastructure and agriculture industry, in addition to killing thousands.
Over 70% of the crops were destroyed in 2008 and 22,000 homes were destroyed in that incident, which the country was still recovering from.
“My thoughts and prayers go out to those who have been affected by this earthquake,” President Barack Obama said in a statement. “We are closely monitoring the situation and we stand ready to assist the people of Haiti.”
Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere.
Hundreds are already feared dead and scientists expect massive casualties.
“President Obama has already said that the U.S. stands ‘ready to assist’ the Haitian people,” Wyclef said. “The U.S. Military is the only group trained and prepared to offer that assistance immediately. They must do so as soon as possible. The international community must also rise to the occasion and help the Haitian people in every way possible.”