CONCERN Worldwide Calls for Disaster Risk Management Reflection

Bangula ADMARC evacuation camp Bangula ADMARC evacuation camp - pic by Alfred Guta

An International Humanitarian Organization, CONCERN Worldwide says stakeholders should reflect and deeply discuss how best the country can mitigate disasters.

The Organization’s Area Manager for the Southern region, Tommy Chimpanzi told Zodiak Online the devastating effects of Cyclone Freddy have exposed huge gaps on the same.

“We must applaud the Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services because there is significant improvement in providing accurate weather alerts. However many are not utilizing the warnings,” lamented Chimpanzi.

He added, “efforts have been made to sensitize people to move upland for example but very few took heed of such calls.

“We have to reflect and seriously discuss how best we can mitigate or address disaster risk management issues. Do we have the policy framework that should guide interventions, do we have enough funding both at community and district level?”

He says various stakeholders including the private sector have a role to play if things are to improve.

The CONCERN Worldwide Area Manager for the Southern region further said communities should have adequate skills to build their resilience besides the country should look into issues of having a new Disaster Risk Management bill.

Chimpanzi noted that the resources being used to respond to disasters could have been channeled towards other sectors including education.

Meanwhile Concern Worldwide with financial support from Irish Aid, has bailed out 500 households at Bangula ADMARC flood survivors’ camp with non-food items including blankets, plastic sheets, plates, buckets, bathing soap and water guard among other things valued at K30 million.

One of the beneficiaries, a widow, Chrissy Moffat a mother of seven, from Kalonga village under Traditional Authority Mlolo in the district has described the aftermath of the disaster as traumatizing.

“It was so difficult to survive the disaster with my one-year and seventh months old child on the back thanks to the engine boat which came in time to save us.

“I am so grateful to CONCERN Worldwide for its timely assistance. I lost most of my things thus making life at the camp difficult,” narrated Chrissy.

The Cyclone Freddy induced floods have killed over 400 people displacing thousands in the Southern region according to the Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DoDMA).

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