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Disaster: FEMA inaugurates local emergency management committee in Kwali



The Federal Capital Territory Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) on Monday, inaugurated Local Emergency Management Committee for Kwali Area Council of the territory.

The committee was inaugurated during FEMA’s dry season sensitisation campaign in Kwali Council Secretariat, Kwali, to prevent dry season related disasters.

The Committee has the Council’s Vice Chairman, Mr Mohammed Yakubu as its Chairman with the Directors of Environment, Agriculture, Health, Education and Social Development, and Works among other directors as members.

Others are representatives of youths, traditional leaders, National Orientation Agency, Nigeria Police, Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps, local vigilante, fire service and Special Assistant to the Chairman on Emergency Matters among others.

Mrs Florence Wenegieme, Director, Forecasting, Response and Mitigation, FEMA, explained that the committee would serve as the first responder to emergency situations in the council.

Wenegieme added that the committee would also sensitise community members to disaster prevention and mitigation where prevention fails.

“This is in accordance with the global strategy for disaster risk reduction, adding that it would help to reduce the impact of disasters on communities when they occurred.

“The committee will be trained on how to support community members to prevent preventable disasters,” she added.

On dry season sensitisation, the director said that the move was to ensure zero loss of lives and properties to disasters in the FCT.

She described sensitisation as an innovative tool in disaster management, stressing the need for community members to be aware of disasters and how to prevent or mitigate their impact.

The director particularly identified fire outbreaks, epidemic, and buildings collapse, among other dry season related disasters that residents should know about and how to prevent them from occurring.

She called for the full support of Area Council’s executives in sensitising residents against attitudes that would predispose them to hazards that could turn to disasters.

According to her, disaster management is everybody’s business, stressing that relevant stakeholders must play their peculiar roles in disaster management.

The chairman of Kwali Area Council, Mr Danladi Chiya, described the establishment of the committee as a huge relief.

Chiya explained that the committee would take over the burden of emergency response from his shoulder, particularly flood, fire outbreaks, and building collapse, among others.

He said that inaugurating the committee was a stepping-stone towards saving lives and properties during disasters and promised to provide the needed support and motivation to enable the members deliver on their tasks.

He said that the council was taking the issue of disaster seriously, adding that it observes monthly sanitation to keep the environment clean.

“Kwali Area Council is also the only area council with a Special Assistant on Emergency Matters,” he said.

In his remarks, the Chairman of the committee, Alhaji Mohammed Yakubu, pledged to deliver on the mandate.

Philip Yatai

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