ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The 5th meeting of the National Disaster Management Commission (NDMC) was held in Islamabad on Wednesday with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi in the Chair, and which approved a proposal for putting in place a cohesive disaster management legislation and institutional framework through merger, repealing or reconfiguring the existing laws and organizations related to the disaster management.
In order to overcome bureaucratic delays and improve efficiency and effectiveness of the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), it was also decided in principle to place NDMA under the Prime Minister’s Office.
The meeting also discussed various proposals for capacity enhancement of the NDMA. It was also decided to strengthen aviation wing of the Ministry of Interior for providing aviation support to NDMA during its rescue and relief efforts.
The NMDC meeting – held at Prime Minister’s Office in Islamabad – was attended by the Leader of Opposition in National Assembly, Leader of Opposition in Senate, Minister for Climate Change, Minister for Defence, Foreign Minister, Minister for National Food Security and Research, Minister for Water Resources, Advisor to PM for Finance, MoS for Information, Broadcasting, NH&LH, Governor Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Chief Minister Gilgit Baltistan, Prime Minister AJK, Minister for Disaster Management Punjab, Minister for Rehabilitation Sindh, Chairman NDMA and senior officials.
The Chairman NDMA Lt. General Omar Mahmood Hayat presented an overview of disaster management context of the country, evolution of disaster management authority, achievements made so far and the challenges faced by the NDMA in responding to emergency situations and taking measures for disaster risk reduction and effective response mechanism. He also apprised the meeting about the contributions of the NDMA towards providing relief and rescue efforts during emergencies in various foreign Countries.
In his remarks, the prime minister said that climate change coupled with various other factors has increased the frequency of disasters and therefore calls for higher level of preparedness and institutional response to meet these challenges. He said that past experience should be utilized to fine tune disaster management strategies and put in place an efficient and effective mechanism in line with best international practices.
The meeting reviewed the progress on decisions of the previous NDMC meetings.
The meeting granted ex-post facto approval to NDMC for compensation of Rs 104.20 million to the affectees of Line of Control (LoC) firing. Relief/Aid provided to the friendly Countries during various disasters was also ratified during the meeting.
The meeting approved the Pakistan School Safety Framework (PSSF) which would serve as a model for the provinces to ensure safety and disaster risk reduction.
It was decided to create a model National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) as a pilot project, at the Federal Capital level by utilizing the human resource available with other organizations associated with disaster and relief management.