Gov’t allocates ‘D4 million’ to disaster victims

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By Olimatou Coker

The government recently handed over a sum of 4 million dalasi to National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA).

The money is to support the 2018 disaster victims across the length and breadth of the country.

Speaking to The Standard on the sidelines of the handing-over ceremony at the KMC offices, Sering Modou Joof, deputy executive director of the NDMA, said: “I am pleased to inform the whole nation that the 4 million dalasi that we are using to support the flood victims is from the government of The Gambia.

We have been helping these victims with our partners but government recognised that intervention is their primary responsibility, that they should handle issues of the citizens themselves. That is why they gave out this money.”

He went on to say that the NDMA’s focus of intervention, now that money in their coffers, will be on those affected by floods.

“However, with the amount involved in this, it doesn’t suffice the people that are affected. We will continue to mobilise for more resources to ensure that those that are not privileged this time around receive help,” he said.

“As an agency responsible for the coordination of disaster matters in this country, it becomes our primary responsibility to ensure that where resources are not available, we search for them and ensure that the most vulnerable are assisted.”

Joof urged Gambians to “change their attitudes” towards disaster, saying most of the misfortunes that happened in this country were down to “people’s attitude”.

“People really need to change if we want a better life,” he admonished.

A municipal disaster coordinator at the KMC, Ngange Jeng, said nine wards in the KMC were hit with flooding.

“Within that nine wards, 30 households are going to be supported based on their conditions.

Each beneficiary will be going home with 4500 dalasi to support them,” he explained.

He said before assisting families, they first look at how “vulnerable” they are.

Other speakers included beneficiary Sukai Ceesay, who thanked the government through NDMA for the assistance.