17 August 2018

Nigeria: Nema to Map Communities Vulnerable to Disasters, Says DG

Kasim Sumaina in Abuja

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) thursday hinted that it was set to map communities in Nigeria that are vulnerable to disasters caused by adverse weather conditions.

The move, it noted, was part of its disaster management and climate risk prevention programme, adding that the mapping exercise would help mitigate the severe impact of disaster across the country.

The Director-General of NEMA, Mustapha Maihaja, who disclosed this in Abuja at the stakeholders' consultative workshop on climate risk prevention/mitigation preparedness and response for 2018, also stated that it was important for agencies of the government to collectively prepare and strategise to reduce climate induced disasters in Nigeria.

According to him, "To effectively ensure disaster risks mitigation, NEMA collaborated with relevant stakeholders and agencies to put together in a simplified manner, the disaster implications of the Annual Flood Outlook (AFO) and the Seasonal Rainfall Prediction.

"The AFO is an annual publication of the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency, which provides information on the country's river basins and dams in order to stimulate early action against hydrological risks in the country.

"The SRP, on the other hand, is an annual publication of the Nigeria Meteorological Agency that provides weather information which gives a better understanding of Nigeria's weather outlook."

Maihaja said the report generated by stakeholders provides information on disaster management implication on agriculture, water resources, infrastructure and health with actionable recommendations to cushion anticipated effects.

He stated that "in line with the paradigm shift to disaster risk reduction, NEMA is preparing to also map vulnerable communities based on the prediction as indicated by our climate risk monitoring agencies in order to enhance and direct enlightenment campaign in critical states.

"I am sure that this new approach will pay off positively if we adhere to the technical committee submissions and take our resolutions today to the target population."

The NEMA boss further noted that it was vital to deliberate extensively in order to define an effective process that would enable stakeholders at state, local government and community levels to prepare sufficiently to mitigate as well as respond to anticipated climate risk and secondary hazards whenever the need arises.

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