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By Godfrey Olukya 27-5-2013

The government of Namibia,in cooperation with International organization of migration
(IOM) and with financial support from USAID’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance has trained 32 officials in disaster risk management.

The trained officers who were passed out at Ongwendiwa training camp are to work
as trainers of other risk managers. The training is meant to enhance national capacity for disaster risk management by increasing the country’s resilience to the multiple natural disaster hazards.

The trained thirty-two officials were selected from key government ministries, regional and town councils, and the Namibian Red Cross Society.

The training reportedly included key disaster risk management concepts and  principles, the institutional framework for disaster risk management in Namibia, Namibia’s hazard profile, and community participation in risk management,among others.

It coincided with the recent drought disaster declaration by President Hifikepunye Pohamba, who underlined the severity of the situation and called for coordination among all stakeholders. It also forms part of a broader regional capacity building programme for sustainable and coherent disaster risk management, which includes the
neighboring countries of Botswana and Mozambique and is founded on the principles of national ownership, partnership, participation and a low-cost methodology.

Namibia is a country prone to annual natural disasters including floods, droughts and fires. Last year the Namibian government passed a disaster risk management act in an effort to institutionalize the legal framework for disaster risk management.

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