Re-think Fiji’s National Disaster Response
January 14, 2022
The Government needs to completely re-think Fiji’s national disaster response, says National Federation Party President Pio Tikoduadua.
Mr Tikoduadua said the NFP’s vision for disaster response is focused on three things – community partnership, year-round preparation and clear communication.
“We want to put the community at the centre with disaster response committees in every community. They will lead the way and the Government will support them, working with business and the NGOs who already know so much about what to do”.
“We want this to be a year-round exercise so that we are preparing all the time – dredging rivers, clearing drains and irrigation channels and making sure our evacuation centres and critical government facilities are cyclone-ready”.
“And finally we must communicate. We must hear from the people on what they need to be disaster-ready. We must have plans in place for every centre which we have shared around.
“And after disasters occur we must share our information and learning so that we can be better next time”.
Mr Tikoduadua said the Fiji First Government had no clear plan to decisively deal with two crises upon us – impact of the 3rd wave of Covid-19 and the devastation caused by the recent flooding as a result of TC Cody.
Mr Tikoduadua said the Government must explain basic failures in its planning and preparedness in its press conference tomorrow (Saturday) and tell the nation how it will improve its performance.
“Why is the government only now asking for tenders for food and other essentials?” “What work did it do before the cyclone season to prevent flooding and other preventable losses?”
Mr Tikoduadua has written an op-ed article on the topic, to appear in The Fiji Times tomorrow.