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Mechanism created to strengthen early warning system

Mechanism created to strengthen early warning system

Marthina Mutanga
THE Southern African Development Community (SADC) Secretariat is monitoring and drawing lessons from regional operational responses in the flood and drought affected countries, and documenting these, to strengthen regional preparedness, response mechanisms and early warning systems.
Magreth Kalo, the Public Relations Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, said the region is currently embarking upon strategic and interventions to the accelerate resilience building initiatives improve early warning and response, and contingency planning to minimize the impacts of future climatic and other disasters.
The El Niño induced drought, which is currently experienced in most SADC Member States including Namibia, resulted in crop failure, water shortages and poor grazing.
The just ended 2018/2019-rainfall season, has concomitantly presented climate related disasters in the form of drought, on the one hand, and floods caused by tropical cyclones, namely, Idai, Enawo and Kenneth on the other hand.
Kalo further said these events left the region in a humanitarian situation with many people having lost their lives in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe due to cyclones Idai and Kenneth.
It has been confirmed that the cyclones that struck the region killed over 1000 people, injured an estimated 3000 people, destroyed houses and production infrastructure, and also damaged an estimated 800 000 hectares of agriculture land.
President Hage Geingob declared thet drought situation in Namibia as a National State of Emergency.
This shows the severity of the drought situation in the Region, which prompted Member States to take immediate emergency disaster response measures in order to save human lives and livestock.
The action was taken to accelerate the finalization of the 2019/20 Vulnerability Assessments Reports so as to ensure timely advisory services to Member States of the unfolding regional food insecurity situation.
Kalo lastly said resilience-building initiatives improve early warning and response and contingency planning to minimize the impacts of future climatic and other disasters.

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