QUETTA, 19 April 2022: The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) handed over newly constructed Emergency Storage Facilities, Prefabricated temperature-controlled storage units, and IT Equipment to the Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) Balochistan and District Disaster Management Authorities (DDMAs) of Chaman and Chagai districts in a ceremony organized at the Serena Hotel, Quetta on Tuesday. The contribution was part of the WFP’s efforts to support and strengthen the Government of Balochistan for effective emergency preparedness and disaster risk reduction in Balochistan.
WFP has also recently deployed the Emergency Preparedness Capacity Index (EPCI) – a corporate tool that helps identify the needed capacities for effective response. The exercise was conducted by WFP for PDMA Balochistan and six selected districts, aiming to enhance the preparedness capability of DDMAs and PDMA Balochistan.
The handover ceremony was attended by Chris Kaye, Country Director WFP, Abdul Saboor Kakar, Chairman Chief Minister Inspection Team, Naseer Ahmed Nassar, Director General, PDMA Balochistan, government officials from PDMA and DDMAs, other government line departments, representatives from the UN, and academia.
The two Emergency Storage Facilities along with the two temperature-controlled storage units and IT Equipment will enhance the emergency storage, coordination, communication, and reporting capacity of the district disaster management authorities in the Chaman and Chagai districts.
Chris Kaye, Country Director, WFP Pakistan, while handing over the emergency facilities and equipment to the Director-General PDMA, Government of Balochistan, said that WFP was pleased to provide the support and the additional capacity that would help the Government of Balochistan better manage and coordinate responses to disasters in the region. “Capacity to store and manage critical relief items at local levels can save lives as well as reduce the impact on communities caused by sudden-onset disasters,” he added.
Balochistan has witnessed an increase in natural and human-induced disasters resulting in the loss of lives, property, and livelihoods. While there have been improvements in the capacity for forecasting by the Pakistan Meteorological Department, ensuring that this information is communicated and acted on in a timely way remains a challenge, especially in the more remote areas of the country. WFP, through its Provincial office in Quetta, initiated deliberations with PDMA Baluchistan and has agreed on critical needs-based interventions together with UN and NGO partners, to ensure all efforts are made to improve preparedness and response.
Abdul Saboor Kakar, Chairman Chief Minister Inspection Team, appreciated the WFP’s support to the Government of Balochistan in Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Risk Reduction. He said that he is hopeful that the interventions WFP has jointly designed and carried out in collaboration with PDMA Balochistan would result in better emergency preparedness response and would be used to strengthen the capabilities at all levels.
Speaking on the occasion, Naseer Ahmed Nassar, Director General, PDMA Balochistan, said that the establishment of these two Emergency Storage Facilities in districts Chagai and Chaman is strategic support from the World Food Programme and would help in prepositioning of food commodities as well as other emergency food and non-food items in two bordering districts.