Bundibugyo, Ntoroko Districts Revive Disaster Committees

2173 Views Ntoroko, Uganda

In short
Samson Baguma, a member of Ntoroko District Disaster Committee says that the previous committee was often overwhelmed whenever disaster would strike and were ignorant on how to respond appropriately.

Bundibugyo and Ntoroko districts have revived their disaster management committees after being inactive for more than three year. Both districts are prone to floods and landslides.   Now, the Committee members are demanding for financial support, if they are to respond to disasters effectively.

Samson Baguma, a member of Ntoroko District Disaster Committee says that the previous committee was often overwhelmed whenever disaster would strike and were ignorant on how to respond appropriately.  
Baguma adds that due to minimal resources, the district often relies on assistance from organizations like Uganda Red Cross, World Vision and UNICEF to fill in the gaps.
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Charles Mwesige, the secretary Ntoroko District Disaster Committee says they have always been caught off guard whenever landslides occur. He wants the district to set aside money for managing disasters, since they are unpredictable.

Vincent Magezi, the Bundibugyo District Natural Resources coordinator who also acts as the chairperson of the District Disaster Committee, says the district has put aside Shillings 450 Million to cater for emergencies. 

He says that part of the funds will be used to relocate affected persons and look for temporary shelter during disasters, as they wait for government intervention. Magezi notes that in the past, it was not easy for the committees to perform due to financial constraints.

Denis Muhindo, a resident of Kanara village in Karugutu Sub County, Ntoroko district welcomes the revival of the disaster committees. He hopes that the communities in areas vulnerable to floods will be availed with early and relevant information on potential or actual disasters. 

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In May, 15 people were killed and property destroyed when landslides hit Bundibugyo district.  In 2010, government formulated a disaster preparedness policy to cater for future emergencies.
The policy establishes national and local capabilities through disaster committees to ensure that all known natural and man-made hazards do not result into disasters.

The policy also mandates the local governments to budget funds for disaster management and that the disaster preparedness and management department is inadequately funded.


About the author

Emmanuel Kajubu
Emmanuel Kajubu is proud to have been the first Ugandan journalist to write in depth pieces about the Tooro Kingdom institution. His knowledge of the inner workings of the Tooro Kingdom is what made him privy to the splits in the royal family. These splits almost challenged Tooro Omukama Oyo Nyimba Iguru's reign.

Culture, agriculture and the environment are just two areas of many of interest to Kajubu. As long as he has held a pen, Kajubu has also written about public policy, health and crime.

Kajubu is keen on impacting his society not just as a writer but also a trainer and mentor. Bundibugyo and Ntoroko districts fall under his docket. Kajubu has been a URN staff member since 2008.