The National Disaster Controller, Mr. David Kolitagane and the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) led by its Director and National Disaster Coordinator, Ms. Vasiti Soko met with its partners in Suva yesterday to discuss how best they could work together to ensure Fijians affected by Tropical Cyclone Ana are assisted equally based on the needs on the ground.
More than 100 representatives of civil society and non-government organisations, faith-based organisations, and other community groups attended the coordination meeting.
Ms. Soko reminded all partners about the need for them to work with the NDMO on their plans for assistance towards communities affected by TC Ana. By doing so, Ms Soko said NDMO would then be able to look at how they could assist in the mobilisation of their assistance on the ground.
Partners were also encouraged to assist in the areas of Shelter, WASH, Food Security, Safety and Protection and Education.
These are the critical areas currently prioritised by Government. During the meeting, Ms Soko reiterated that under the National Disaster Management Act, only the NDMO and Government Ministries were responsible for conducting Initial Damage Assessments (IDAs).
Data gathered would then be shared with partners. While speaking during the meeting, Mr Kolitagane highlighted the importance of submitting detailed information to help in better planning government response for TC Yasa.
A request was also made that the NDMO share all content relating to the campaign on Leptospirosis, Typhoid, Diarrhoea and Dengue Fever (LTDD) with partners. Mr Kolitagane also pleaded with the attendees to ensure that officials deployed to affected areas were equipped with the proper clothing and safety wear to protect them against such diseases.
Aspire Network also commended the hardwork and humbleness of Government officials on the ground and pleaded with CSOs and NGOs to be considerate of situations they were in when approaching them for guidance in the mobilisation of their assistance.
The Soqosoqo Vakamarama also thanked Government and NDMO for consulting their partners in their response for TC Ana.
The NDMO assured all partners that plans were in place for deployment of the first wave of food ration and non-food items (NFIs) distribution to affected areas.
Ms. Soko added the first IDA teams were deployed to the Central Division yesterday.