From Femi Oyelola Kaduna
The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) in collaboration with other relevant disaster management agencies is to re-assess and re-strategise towards building the culture of preparedness, prevention and quick response to disasters in the country.
NEMA’s North West Zonal Coordinator, Ishaya Isah Chonoko who stated this in Kaduna at a stakeholders meeting saying that, the move was necessary to curtail destruction of properties and casualties caused by floods.
“It is therefore against this background that NEMA/SEMA as agencies saddled with the responsibility of coordinating disasters in the country have found it expedient to organise this forum to assess the state of preparedness of all Organisations or Agencies that are stakeholders in disaster management in this Zone,” he said.
“The use of the Agency’s proactive approach to disasters as part of our Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) strategy needs to be imbibed by all stakeholders in order to reduce the risks and mitigate impact of disasters in our communities.”
According to the coordinator, NEMA’s mandates are to manage disasters in all its ramification, compelled to ascertain the capacity of all its critical stakeholders and monitor their state of preparedness with a view to proffering solutions towards efficient and effective disaster management in the Zone.
He said the recent floods in Kaduna had made it necessary for the agency to drill and task stakeholders to carry out sensitisation campaigns on disaster management.
“There is need for frequent interaction of stakeholders, to enable us all keep abreast of any development within the circle. The need therefore for collaboration, planning and commitment to deal with disaster issues timely by all the tiers of government particularly the LGAs cannot be over emphasised,” he said.
The coordinator, however, warned that unless disaster management and risk reduction are effectively driven at all levels, their impacts will be extremely difficult and costly to address.
Speakers at the meeting frowned at the poor response to disasters and urged those saddled with the responsibilities to intensify efforts in order to achieve the set goals.