July 19, 2011

National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) has a deficit of 99 percent of logistics it needs to manage disasters countrywide, an audit report has indicated on Monday.

This means that the national disaster management body has only one percent of the logistics it needs to implement its activities nationwide.

“In the event of any major catastrophe, lots of lives could be lost,” the report presented to Parliament by Mr Albert Kan-Dapaah Chairman of the Public Account Committee (PAC) said on Monday.

He told Parliament when he presented the report of the Public Account Committee on the Report of the Auditor-General on the preparedness of NADMO to manage disasters in the country.

Mr Kan-Dapaah said NADMO had staffing challenges and explained that it was difficult for NADMO to attract competent personnel as result of poor remuneration.

He called on the Government to depoliticize the organization to be able to win the confidence of Ghanaians.

Papa Owusu-Ankomah, New Patriotic Party MP for Sekondi, in supporting the motion said NADMO must be reformed to move from the mere relief sharing function to a more professional body that coordinates with the security forces to manage disasters in Ghana.

“We need a core cadre of well trained personnel who can manage disasters in Ghana, so that it is not seen only as distributors of relief item,” he said.

He said NADMO must be assessed on the basis of its effectiveness for it to be established if it could manage disasters in the country in this modern times.

“Let’s make NADMO a more professional institution,” he said and warned against the political patronage of NADMO so that a change in government did not affect it in any way.

In running the affairs of NADMO, he said: “Let us not be interested in transient political advantage.”

Alhaji Mohammed Muntaka Mubarak, NDC member for Asawase said it was pathetic that most individual did not have any plan for disasters, adding that “we only depend on survival.”

He noted that flood, bush fires and fire outbreaks with the cadence at which Ghana experienced them could erode the middle income status Ghana had attained.

Alhaji Mubarak expressed disappointment at the one percent preparedness for disaster management by NADMO and told politicians to take their hands-off issues of NADMO, adding “for how long shall we continue with the tit for tat game.”

Mr Enoch T. Mensah, Minister for Employment and Social Welfare, said the planning units of district assemblies must be strengthened, energised and encouraged to lead the crusade of preventing developers from building on waters.

Mr Dominic Azimbe Azumah, NDC member for Garu/Tempane called for the establishment of a contingency fund as stated in the article 117 of the 1992 Constitution.

He also called for higher budgetary support for NADMO to be able to effectively execute its mandates.