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26.02.2009 General News

Ghana to celebrate World Civil Defence Day


Ghana and the rest of the world would mark World
Civil Defence Day on Sunday, March 1 to draw public attention to the need for preventive and self-protection measures in the event of disaster and similar emergencies.

The World Civil Defence Day under the auspices of the Geneva-based International Civil Defence Organisation (ICDO) is celebrated every year on March 1 to commemorate the establishment in 1972 of the (ICDO) as an inter-governmental organization to ensure maximum benefits on international collaboration.

A statement signed by Mr. Kofi Portuphy, National Coordinator of the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO), said the primary goal of the ICDO was to create opportunities for men and women to obtain decent and productive working conditions of freedom, equity, security and dignity because the International Labour Organisation (ILO) law on safety at workplace made it mandatory for employers to protect workers against work related sickness, disease and injury.

“Experience has shown that in a secure and safe work environment, morale and productivity are very high,” the statement said.

The Day, on the theme; “Civil Defence: Preventive Information and Communication Techniques” aims to draw the attention of national authorities to the need for public education and sensitization through the communication of information to vulnerable communities.

The statement said this involved making people aware of the risks they lived with, how to prevent them and how to manage disasters when they occurred in order to alleviate their effects.

The statement said the theme for the day threw a challenge to stakeholders in civil defence to double their efforts in enlightening the general public in disaster risk reduction measures at their places of sports, entertainment and work.

NADMO has facilitated the formation of a Journalists Club for Disaster Prevention to generate, among journalists, the interest in disaster risk reduction and related issues.

The statement therefore appealed to the media to work jointly with NADMO and its stakeholders to help build the resilience of the communities by informing them of the hazards they lived with and how to manage them by devoting more space and air time to disaster preventive and related issues.

The statement said stakeholders must ensure that safety measures to prevent and mitigate disasters were incorporated in our developmental policies and projects to facilitate the creation of safe living, working and playing environments with the hope that government would support them.

NADMO appealed to the local government, traditional authorities and governmental and non-governmental stakeholder agencies to ensure the enforcement of bi-laws on building, waste disposal, bush burning and a host of other practices that created disasters or intensify their impact on victims and the environment.