The National Emergency Management Agency has trained volunteers at the grassroots on disaster management and risk reduction with special focus on flood prevention and control.
This was the thrust of a capacity building workshop organized by NEMA for Grassroots Emergency Management Volunteers on flood Evacuation drill at Heritage Hotel, Osogbo, Osun State on Wednesday.
Speaking during the workshop, NEMA South-West Zonal Coordinator, Mr. Iyiola Akande noted that since disaster occurs in the communities and people of that community are the first respondents when disaster occurs, it is imperative to sensitize the grassroots so as to enjoy their cooperation and collaboration.
According to Akande, “The sensitization is aimed at raising the consciousness of the people on proactive disaster management and risk reduction through community collaboration for an effect disaster prevention, mitigation and coordination among members of vulnerable
“Disaster occurs in the communities, it is paramount to build the capacity of first responders to emergencies so as to step up the resilience of potential victims of emergencies and disasters.
“Local authorities have direct link with key service delivery to their communities. They should be the best informed with regard to hazard and risk associated with their environment.
“This is why officials of Local Government areas are not left out in this workshop, for disaster management to have positive impact. Local government council and community must be involved in developing their own preventive, mitigation and response to strategies.”
He charged the state government on importance of risk reduction and enjoined Local Government councils in the state to mobilize their community members and volunteers to strengthen the local emergency management committees in their areas.
Also speaking at the workshop, NEMA Senior Disaster Risk Reduction Officer, Miss Aikpokpo Ebahi cautioned people against blockage of water ways. She admonished people of the state to avoid building on river bank. She also warned against drinking flooded water as such could be contaminated.