NEMA moves to strengthen action against common disasters, says DG   

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) is undertaking hazard risk analysis for Nigeria with the United Nations Children Educational Fund (UNICEF) to identify and strengthen action towards addressing common disasters in different parts of the country.

Director General of NEMA, Mrs Zubaida Umar and the UNICEF Country Representative in Nigeria, Ms Cristian Munduate reviewed the progress of the risk analysis on Tuesday when the latter visited the NEMA headquarters in Abuja. The meeting was also aimed at strengthening the existing partnership between the two organizations. 

In her remark, the Director General NEMA who appreciated the partnership of UNICEF said it was imperative for the analysis to be followed by capacity building of disaster managers at the grassroots in the states to manage situations in the communities before the arrival of further support that may be required.

She said after the on-going series of workshops that are being held in all the geo-political zones, a national validation and launch of the hazard risk analysis would hold in Abuja to complete the exercise.

 “I appreciate UNICEF’s support to the agency spanning over ten years, especially in the development of hazard risk analysis for Nigeria, which addressed issues of flooding, epidemics and armed conflict/ violence. Others are the development and review of National and Sub-National Contingency Plans for the country; simulation exercise for emergency preparedness; and UNICEF’s support for the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) sector through coordination and supply of WASH items. These initiatives have gone a long way in complementing NEMA’s efforts in emergency preparedness and response to disasters in Nigeria,” she said.

 Mrs Umar also spoke about NEMA’s preparedness for this year’s raining season, noting that the Agency, in line with its mandate of coordinating emergency preparedness, mitigation and response activities across the country NEMA has held an Emergency Coordination Forum (ECF) meeting of relevant stakeholders to enlighten them and to discuss preparedness and proactive measures with regards to the predicted 2024 flood disaster and other hazards.

In addition to other actions, according to her, the Agency has also taken steps to inform State Governors of the implications of the prediction and the need for the State Governments to take adequate precautionary measures, in addition to the production of risk maps; media campaign and sensitization to the public among others.  

The UNICEF Country Representative, Ms Munduate in her response said that her organization would help to develop training modules for Staff of NEMA and State Emergency Management Agencies and other sub-national stakeholders. 

The UNICEF Country representative was also led by the DG NEMA on a tour of the newly commissioned state-of-the-art NEMA Geo-Spatial Centre equipped with modern Geographical Centre facilities.

L-R: UNICEF Chief of Field Operations, Mr Opiyo Nixon, Director General, National Emergency Management Agency, Mrs Zubaida Umar, UNICEF Country Representative in Nigeria, Ms Cristian Munduate and UNICEF Emergency Specialist, Mr Yinka Afolabi during the visit of UNICEF Country Representative to NEMA Headquarters in Abuja.

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