21 April 2019
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Monday, 11 February 2019 14:07

Govt to move from disaster response to resilience programmes

Written by  Brian Wasili

Mwanza, February 11, 2019: Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DoDMA) says it is in the process of strengthening programmes that can bring lasting solutions to challenges that people face in the country due to disasters.

Director for Response and Recovery at DoDMA, Paul Kalilombe disclosed this in an interview with Malawi News Agency (MANA) on Thursday at Tulonkhondo Football Ground in Senior Chief Kanduku.

 He disclosed the new plan after distributing some relief items to 293 households in Mwanza whose houses and property were damaged due to prolonged stormy rains the district experienced for two weeks from 16 to 24 January, this year (2019).

“As DoDMA, now we are moving out of response and trying to build resilience amongst our communities," said Kalilombe.

He explained that for the past years, Malawi has been conducting response activities but now it was high time to be more systematic to disasters.

According to Kalilombe, to do this, the country is promoting a "Building back better" Programme which he said will enable Malawians to be resilient to the phenomena.

"So we want to do something that will have long lasting effect rather than what we are doing at the moment," added Kalilombe.

He then assured recipients of the donation and all people across the country of government's commitment to assist them during disasters.

"It is the responsibility of Malawi Government to give humanitarian aid to its people in times of need such as disasters,” added Kalilombe.

He also asked relevant authorities responsible for conducting disaster assessments in the districts to keep such records for purposes of comparative analysis by government.

"Government would like to see trends of disasters that are affecting Malawians in particular districts for proper action," said Kalilombe.

Each household was given a 50 kilogram (kg) bag of maize, two blankets, plastic sheet, 5kg of beans and assorted kitchen utensils among others.

In her remarks after receiving the items, Grace Jobu from GVH Tulonkhondo hailed government for the gesture, saying the items would assist her as food and shelter.

"The maize that I have received today will help my children and I will also use the plastic sheet to cover the roof of my house for better shelter,” said Jobu.

Group Village Headman Tulonkhondo was thankful to government for coming swiftly with support to affected people in his area.

This is the second time this year alone for people of Senior Chiefs Kanduku, Nthache and Traditional Authority Govati to be affected by the disaster.