Flood Relief Committee, National Disaster Management Authority and the United Nation agencies share notes
Islamabad: To get an update on UN agencies response to the Appeal for 2011 flood affectees and their resource mobilization, donor response and maturity time for contribution, expectations of the UN from government of Pakistan/NDMA and the issues and challenges posed by the recent floods, a meeting of the Parliamentary Flood Relief Committee with the NDMA and UN agencies was convened.
The meeting was attended by members of the Committee, including Qamar Uz zaman Kaira, Nayyar Bukhari, the Chairman NDMA, Dr. Zafar Qadir, UN Humanitarian Coordinator Mr. Timmo Pakkala, the UNDP Country Director Mr. Toshi Tanaka and representatives of various other UN agencies.
The Chairman NDMA, Dr. Zafar Qadir updated the session about the current flood situation in the affected areas and the ongoing relief activities. He informed the meeting that the Parliamentary Flood Relief Committee has already paid two visits to the flood hit areas and they are again visiting the affected areas on the 29th September to ensure that the disaster mechanism is in place and relief is provided to each and every affected soul. Dr. Zafar Qadir said that this meeting intends to share point of view of the government with the UN agencies and get their perspective as well.
He said that the President and the Prime Minister are continuously engaged in developing links with the international community. The Chairman NDMA informed that currently US$ 356.7 Million are required for Food Security, Health, Shelter, WASH, Coordination and Logistics.
Speaking on the occasion, Qamar Uz Zaman Kaira stressed the need for improved coordination among all the stakeholders. The UN Humanitarian Coordinator, Mr. Timmo Pakkala, asked for high level commitment towards the flood affectees and close coordination with the community to utilize available resources in the best possible manner.
He termed NDMA as the highest coordinating body in case of disasters and highly appreciated its role in all such situations. Mr. Timo Pakkala said that the international community responded to the appeal of the government for assistance but the response is relatively slow and US$ 20 Million have so far been donated by the international humanitarian fraternity. He suggested focusing individual donors in order to see if they have any reservations.
The UNDP Country Director, Mr. Toshi Tanaka said that the focus is on the institutional capacity of PDMA. The representative of UNHCR informed the session that his organization has provisioned 10,000 tents to flood affectees of Sindh and 5,000 for those of Balochistan.
The Member Operations, NDMA, Brig. Sajid Naeem informed the meeting that so far 280,000 tents have been distributed among the affectees. He thanked all UN agencies for their unflinching commitment with this humanitarian undertaking.
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