Dear Editor – Last week, students at Mbokonavera High School expressed their frustration at the authorities for allowing evacuees to continue to occupy their classrooms.
Many outside Honiara City are complaining of delays in the receipt of relieve assistance from NDMO (National Disaster Management Office) including shortage of food.
Thousands of our people are still in evacuation centres some 4-5 weeks after the flood. NDMO is telling everyone that money has run out.
The above picture is not only confusing but sadly reflects the poor state on the part of responsible authorities to deal with emergencies situations.
Does government have a policy to deal with national emergencies?
Judging by what happened on April the 3rd, it seems no policy is in place.
Looking back, I wonder why RAMSI with all its resources (including helicopters) were not available to help people on Thursday and early Friday when the flood hit Honiara City.
The April disaster has taught us many lessons.
As for me personally, it taught me of the importance of being prepared for disasters like flooding, earthquakes etc.
I wonder whether it taught our leaders and those manning NDMO anything.
It is time we learn from the experience of others and not to reinvent the wheel.
We need to learn from countries like Fiji, Vanuatu or Tonga which experience cyclones and flooding annually.
These countries share many things with us like limited supply of money, language, culture etc.
Their experiences in preparing for natural disasters should be a lesson for all of us.
Is it not time for NDMO officials to get firsthand experience from above countries, in terms of addressing plight of evacuees, relief rehabilitations, or agricultural programs for affected people?