Taking a close look on Disaster Coverage Auto Africa
The disasters in Africa are increasing in frequency and adversity of impact but a few number of these ever hit the global headlines and they silently erode the capacities of Africans to survive or prosper. The climatic and hydrological hazards, in particular droughts, floods cyclones and landslides dominate the disaster profile of the African region.
Africa is also ravaged by other natural and man-made disasters such as volcanic eruptions, epidemics and conflict.
The Secretary General of the African Federation of Environmental Journalists (AFEJ) met with Mr. Pedro Basabe who is the head, UNISDR Regional Office for Africa on Thursday July 12, 2012 and held at his office in UN Complex in Nairobi, Kenya and discussed deeply how African environmental journalists could take part the disaster risk reduction activities in the region.
The United Nations Inter-agency Secretariat for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR) Africa Office organized several journalists’ trainings and produced a journalist’s guide for disaster coverage, in which AFEJ aims to circulate within its member’s directory.
Although, many countries in Africa have yet to develop their national plans for mainstreaming disaster risk reduction into national development frameworks and sectoral programmes for instance to achieve substantive reduction in disaster losses the strengthening of national and regional environmental journalist networks is an essential condition for early warning system and sustainable development.
Given the potential increase in negative impacts of disasters on social, economic and environmental development in Africa and recognizing the threat that disasters pose to Africa’s ability to meet the Millennium Development Goals, the African continent, with the leadership provided by the commission of the African Union, developed an African Regional Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction, which was adopted by the African ministerial conference on environment in June 2004 and endorsed by the AU assembly of heads of state and government in July of the same yea.
The programme of action for the implementation of the African Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction (2005-2010) was developed and adopted at the first African ministerial conference on disaster risk reduction in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in December, 2005.
The second ministerial conference on disaster risk reduction, held in Nairobi, Kenya in April 2010, in which Mr. Daud Abdi Daud of AFEJ invited and attended together with Somalia’s environment minister honorable Mr. Buri M. Hamsa and was jointly organized by AUC and UNISDR Office for Africa Region, adopted a substantive revision of the POA and reflecting current gaps, extending the time-frame to 2015 and aligning it with the globally mandated Hyogo Framework of Action.