NEMA: DG launches new policy to minimize adverse effects of disasters

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By Chimezie Godfrey

The National Emergency Management Agency ( NEMA) has launched the National Disaster Risk Management (NDRM) policy in order to minimize the adverse effects of disaster in the country.

The policy document was launched on Friday in Abuja during a stakeholders’ meeting with the theme,” Taking  Disaster Risk Reduction (TDRR) to a Higher Level.”

Engr. Mustapha Yunusa Maihaja, the Director General, NEMA said that the policy document will minimize the adverse effects of both natural and human induced disasters which has resulted in loss of lives, large scale displacement, socio economic dislocation, and environmental degradation.

He disclosed that an estimated amount of 3 trillion naira will be required to curb and respond to disasters across the 36 states in 2020 which will only be for provision of short term relief and replacement of damaged infrastructures.

He said,”If we truly want to get ahead of the curve of humanitarian needs and economic losses we must set up strategies to address underlying risk drivers.

“We need to integrate risks as well as potential opportunities into development planning and budgeting.

“This is the only way we can build resilient and sustainable societies capable of addressing both climate and disaster risks.

“This is the only part to reduce mortality, reduce numbers of people affected by disaster, reduce economic losses, and reduce damage to critical infrastructures such as schools and hospitals.

“To achieve the above and move on from our comfort zone, we must deploy appropriate instruments. NEMA has developed several plans and guidelines.

“A major stride is the development of the National Disaster Risk Management (NDRM) policy.”

Maihaja pointed out that the policy document outlines framework providing directions for supporting measures to strengthen communities, individuals, businesses and institutions to minimize the adverse effects of disasters in Nigeria.

He stressed that the policy document concentrates on four priority areas which includes awareness, governance, and awareness, adding that it also guides the development and implementation of disaster management plans and programs of states and local government levels to  the government’s policy  of a safe, more secure and resilient community.

The DG extended the appreciation of the government of Nigeria to donors, development partners, the private sector and the civil society organizations that played active roles in the development of the policy document.

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