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Disaster Response: House of Reps committee decries NEMA’s low budgetary allocation

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The House of Representatives Committee on Disaster Preparedness has decried the low budgetary allocation given to the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).

Mr Abdulraheem Olawuyi, Chairman of the committee disclosed this when he led members on a familiarisation visit to the headquarters of the agency on Thursday in Abuja.

Olawuyi noted that for the agency to be effective in disaster response, adequate funding should be made.

“It is an understatement to say that NEMA is one of the most important agencies when it comes to disaster management in the country.

“We are here as part of our responsibility as a committee saddled with the responsibility to over see all relevant agencies that has to do with disaster management.

“We are here to see what we can do to improve what has been on ground in the past as we are all aware that the level of emergency crises in the country is high.

“We can all recall that during the 2020 budget defence, NEMA had a very small budget and for this type of agency to be effective, there is need to improve on that and so many other areas,” he said.

On his part, Mr Mustapha Maihaja, Director General, NEMA, appreciated the committee for visiting the agency.

He said that the agency was saddled with the responsibility of coordinating all relevant agencies in disaster activities and management.

He however said that due to the National Disaster Response Plan, the agency had not been able to reach out to all disaster cases in the country.

“We have three layers of disasters response which is categorised under minor, major and catastrophic.

“The Local Emergency Management Committee takes care of the minor disasters, States Emergency Management Agency takes care of the major while NEMA takes care of the catastrophic disasters.

“However, we have been trying our best to meet up with disaster response to the best of our ability,” he said.

Nigeria News Agency reports that at the end of the meeting, the committee agreed to assist the agency in terms of legislations and reviewing laws that established the agency.

Members of the committee also charged the agency on quick and effective disaster response.

Edited By: Emmanuel Nwoye/Sadiya Hamza

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