By Mohammed Kandi
Against the backdrop of the international efforts against the rising threats of disasters, the Director General, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Muhammad Sani Sidi, said the Federal Government is committed to promotion of disaster risk reduction for efficient and effective disaster management in the country.
Sani Sidi stated this at the 5th African Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in Abuja.
“In Nigeria, there is political will for disaster risk reduction management. The commitment of the Federal Government of Nigeria to risk reduction, the support of the United Nations Agencies, multilateral organisations, development partners and the private sector have sustained our risk reduction initiatives,” he stated.
He noted that Nigeria has made a significant progress in the implementation of all the key priority areas of the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005- 2015 by identifying the hazard confronting the communities.
Declaring the conference open, the Secretary to the Government of Federation (SGF), Anyim Pius Anyim, called on African countries to pay more attention to disaster issues and challenged delegates to come up with ideas to help government in making the right decision.
The delegates at the conference are drawn from African countries, the United Nations agencies, intergovernmental regional organisations, bilateral and multilateral donors, academia and technical institutions.
Others are the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and Non-Government Organisations, local governments, community leaders, parliamentarians, youth, media and the private sector.
The Africa regional platform for disaster risk reduction is a conference that brings together all stakeholders in disaster management to share experience and to make commitments on actions they would take to protect people and economies from natural and man-made disasters.
Meanwhile more than 15, 700 persons displaced by insurgents in five communities in Borno and Yobe states at the weekend benefitted from relief assistance distributed by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).
The affected communities include Chibok where school girls were recently abducted from their hostels with 5, 300 beneficiaries and Gamboru that was raided by the insurgents resulting also in the loss of lives and destruction of many homes. The others are Jakana and Mainok in Kaga local Government area of Borno state which are located along Damaturu-Maiduguri road and have come under repeated attacks where the relief items were distributed to about 4, 400 displaced persons.
The Agency also distributed relief items to about 6, 000 persons displaced by the insurgency in Goniri community and its environs in Gujba Local Government Area of Yobe State.
Director General, National Emergency Management Agency Alhaji Muhammad Sani Sidi, who was represented by the North East Zonal Coordinator of the Agency Alhaji Mohammed Kanar said the relief distribution was approved for the affected communities to provide them with soccer while the government was doing everything possible to address the security challenges in the areas.
He assured the continued support of the Federal Government towards the rehabilitation of the displaced persons after the return of peace in their communities and urged them to remain law abiding.
On the relief delivery to Chibok, he said it was normal to provide succour to the traumatized community while the government has commenced efforts to ensure the safe return of their abducted daughters back to their families.
The items distributed were food and household items as well as other materials for the special needs of women and children.