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Lessons to be learned from Odisha’s disaster risk governance, says UNDRR chief Mami Mizutori | India News

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NEW DELHI: Bengal’s Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee may still be embroiled in a bitter debate over the management of Cyclone Yaas, but here’s another aspect of the latest calamity: The UN has praised Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik for her “authority. adequately resourced disaster management “that continues to save precious lives.
Others can learn from Patnaik’s political commitment to good governance in disaster risk reduction (DRR), he noted.
In an interview with TOI, Mami Mizutori, head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR), said that “the lessons to be learned from Odisha’s example are the importance of strengthening the governance of disaster risk. investing in preparedness and scenario planning while spreading a greater understanding of disaster risk to the public ”.
Mizutori further said: “Since Prime Minister Patnaik was first elected, he has provided the political commitment necessary to build a strong and well-resourced disaster management authority. In 1999, some 10,000 people died on the coast of Odisha and that has never been repeated thanks to the early warning systems and effective evacuation procedures that have been put in place ”.
This is not the first time that the UN has recognized Patnaik’s good governance in DRR. The UNDRR had presented him with a subpoena in December 2013 appreciating his government’s efforts to evacuate almost a million people during Cyclone Phailin in October of that year, limiting direct victims to 21.
Cyclone Phailin was the same intensity as the 1999 super cyclone that killed more than 10,000 in Odisha.
Mizutori has also praised Patnaik for his handling of the pandemic.
Since its early declaration of a state of emergency in March of last year in response to COVID-19, it appears that culture of risk reduction has taken hold and is paying dividends now at the state’s level of preparedness for the second wave and relatively lower proportion of deaths “.
The head of UNDRR appreciated the emphasis that the state has placed on hiring DRR personnel and training them, instilling in them a culture of service with empathy.
“When the Odisha State Disaster Management Authority hires DRR staff, the job descriptions emphasize the importance of implementing the Sendai Framework and increasing public awareness and understanding of disaster risk,” he said.
During last week’s Yaas cyclone, Odisha evacuated more than 7 billion people and provided them with safe havens with food and medicine. The state established at least 6,870 relief camps, while its resilient infrastructure along the coast did not ensure substantial damage to public property in any of the affected districts. Power was restored two days after the cyclone hit and all roads were cleared.



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