New emergency operation centre opens in Nabouwalu

EU in the Pacific representative Jenny Brown and Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development permanent secretary Meleti Bainimarama at the opening of the new Nabouwalu Emergency Operation Centre. Picture: SUPPLIED

ADEQUATE preparedness to disaster is everyone’s business.

This was the message from the Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development, National Disaster Management and Meteorological Services Meleti Bainimarama as he opened a new Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) in Nabouwalu on Monday.

Mr Bainimarama, in a media release by Government, said every EOC played an important role at strategic level during an emergency.

He said it was the central command and control centre that was responsible for carrying out the principles of emergency preparedness and emergency management, or disaster management functions.

“The common functions of EOCs is to collect, gather and analyze data; make decisions that protect life and property, maintain continuity of the organisation, within the scope of applicable laws; and disseminate those decisions to all concerned agencies and individuals,” Mr Bainimarama said.

The refurbishment work of the Nabouwalu Emergency Operation Centre includes the communications room; district coordinators office, customer service area and general office costing around $60,910.50.

He added that the centre was also a home away from home for officials who will spend long hours and sleepless nights during emergencies and disasters when they conduct operations and taking response actions to alleviate suffering and durable recovery to the affected people.

“This initiative also supports the Sendai Framework Priority 4 which states the “Enhancing disaster preparedness for effective response and to “Build Back Better” in recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction,” Mr Bainimarama said.

He further stated that the escalation in disaster risk means there is a need to strengthen disaster preparedness for response, take action in anticipation of events and ensure capacities are in place for effective response and recovery at all levels.

Meanwhile, according to the Building Safety and Resilience in the Pacific Project (BSRP) Revised Annual Work Plan of 2016 – 2017, a total of $440,000 was allocated to refurbish the National Emergency Operations Centre’s in Fiji.

The EOC’s that have been completed are the:

(i) Lautoka Planning Cell,

(ii) Nadi EOC,

(iii) Tavua EOC and

(iv) equipment and furniture’s for the Central Divisional EOC.

It has also been made known that refurbishment works on three other EOCs in the Central Division have been completed and are awaiting opening.

These are the main Central Divisional EOC, Korovou EOC and Vunidawa EOC.

Ten EOCs will be refurbished under this project and this includes the National Emergency Operation Centre.

 

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