Governor John Duncan, who chaired his final meeting of the National Disaster Management Council (NDMC) on June 15, is claiming that progress has been made in integrating disaster management across various sectors in the British Virgin Islands.
“Overall, there is good evidence that disaster management is being mainstreamed throughout the various sectors, and this is leading to better coordination among agencies, and therefore more effective use of resources,” he said.
Governor Duncan further stated that, over the past three years, he has seen the potential of the NDMC in moving the disaster management agenda forward in a productive and efficient way.
He also mentioned one of the major disaster management accomplishments made during his tenure, adding that the implementation of key legislation should be encouraged to maintain standards.
“The fact that we have been able to gain international accreditation for the programme is evidence that we have managed to develop something that is meeting quality standards.”
“The task ahead will be to ensure that we are able to maintain this. The enactment of the new disaster management legislation and its supporting regulations is key to ensuring that our accreditation remains intact, and that in 2020 we can meet the re-accreditation requirements,” added Governor Duncan.
Meanwhile, Premier Dr D Orlando Smith, in his capacity as Deputy Chairman of NDMC, outlined the importance of integrating disaster management across sectors with particular emphasis on the planning and development sector.
He said there is a concentrated effort to reduce hazard impacts, with the implementation of infrastructural projects.
“Projects such as the Road Town Flood Risk and Hydrology Study, and the Cane Garden Bay Revetment Project have disaster risk reduction and mitigation as cross cutting themes, and this theme is constantly being integrated into our development plans,” the premier continued.
“This integration is critical because, through experiences, we have learnt that disaster management principles must be intertwined in our development efforts for them to be sustainable.”
Meanwhile, the Department of Disaster Management stated that, during the NDMC meeting, its director Sharleen DaBreo gave a statement on the territory’s preparedness for the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season. Details of the preparation were not given to the press.
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