NDMA, Focus ink deals on capacity building
By Our Correspondent
ISLAMABAD: The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and Focus Humanitarian Assistance (FOCUS) Pakistan, an affiliate of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN), signed a memorandum of understanding in Islamabad, says a press release. Dr. Zafar Iqbal Qadri, Chairman NDMA, and Nusrat Nasab, Executive Officer FOCUS Pakistan, signed the MoU, which entails cooperation in the field of capacity building of staff members and resource mobilization for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) programmes; initiation and execution of joint DRR projects, based on the Public-Private-Partnership model and shared advocacy for mainstreaming of Disaster Risk Reduction by enhancing response capacity and awareness at different levels. Federal Minister for Climate Change, Rana Muhammad Farooq Saeed Khan, was also present at the signing ceremony. As part of the MoU, the two organisations will exchange knowledge and expertise, contributing towards improvement of planning, preparedness and response capacity in the field of Disaster Risk Reduction. In the past, NDMA and FOCUS have worked collaboratively on multiple projects implemented in different parts of the country. The MoU will initially remain valid for three years, till 2016. Speaking at the occasion, Dr. Zafar Iqbal, NDMA Chairman, said that the human induced and natural hazards facing Pakistan are immense and the risks can be reduced through collaboration and cooperation at different levels. He expressed hope that the MoU between NDMA and FOCUS Pakistan will pave ways for promoting DRR at the national level. Ms. Nusrat Nasab, Executive Officer of FOCUS Pakistan said that the different agencies of the Aga Khan Development Network and its affiliated institutions have been contributing to the development of Pakistan for many decades now. She said that Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change are among the top concerns of the century and the challenges can be overcome by working closely with relevant government departments. She termed the signing of the MoU as an important step in the right direction and acknowledged the able leadership of Dr. Zafar Iqbal Qadri for making it possible.