Ethiopia: Consolidating Nation's Response to Drought Impacts

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ADDIS ABABA (HAN) November 23, 2015 – Public Diplomacy and Regional Stability Initiatives News. Currently, no other pressing issue than tackling El Nino induced drought in Ethiopia. The drought has resulted shortage of rain in a time of spring when much rain is expected and coming late during the main rainy season. Consequently, this has driven the nation to food insecurity, malnutrition, water and animal feed in most part of the country. This global climactic event has left millions in need of emergency food assistance.

Responding to the situation caused by the drought since the sign of drought have been sensed in some parts of the country the government of Ethiopia is distributing grains to the drought affected people soon.

According to the Deputy Premier Demeke Mekonnen, the government is exerting utmost effort to resist the drought with all possible means. It has already established structure at Kebele level to swiftly respond to the situation. It is also coordinating international organizations’ and partners support.

Along with the emergency food assistance, the government is distributing nutritious food for children, supplying water to the areas affected by the drought using water trucks and supplying animal feed to mitigate the effect of the drought on animals, he said.

It is dare to say the fast response and coordination displayed by the government is commendable. Following this, the reaction coming from the public is also encouraging. While offering food aid and health care services to the people affected by the El Nino weather phenomena, concerted efforts are underway at all levels to prevent damages to crops due to irregular rainfall.

Beyond the support, the appreciation and the confidence the international community build on the Ethiopia’s government readiness and fast response to deal the drought problems will, for sure, have positive impact in tackling the situation.

Actually, the ability the nation build its resistance capacity to stand firm against the effect of the drought has been strengthened in time. This is why many have been convinced that Ethiopia is in a position to address the problems of the drought. In his reflection, the UNOCHA Head Paul Handley said “The leadership and commitment of the government in driving this response has been exceptional”.

The World Food Programme (WFP) Acting Country Director Samir Wanmali has also shared this stance. He said Ethiopia today is by far changed from the past. “Ethiopia has a robust disaster risk management system in place to respond to the needs of its people,” he noted.

Hopefully, it said with the government’s leadership and support from the international community, Ethiopia will mitigate the worst of El Nino’s effect. To this end, the international donors have also been mobilizing resources to fill critical funding gaps and support government response efforts.

With no doubt, to address the periodical drought problem effectively, the effort to conserve natural resource must be intensified. Besides, exerting efforts to sustain the double digit growth and speed up the transformation will certainly be the ultimate solutions to eliminate the burden of the drought.

Nonetheless, for the immediate response for El Niño caused drought enhancing the irrigation schemes and exploiting the water bodies so as to boost the agriculture productivity and production are vital.

It is lurid, indeed, there is a fear that the number of drought affected people will continue to grow. Thus, the support coming from the international community significantly helps curtail the problem. As the problems may continue for quite some time concerted effort is badly require to resist the long effect of the drought.

Above all, the responses from various segments of the society in the country are encouraging. Active engagement of the public in dealing this timely situation would give impetus the synergy that the government has been through to avert the looming situation.

The ongoing well-coordinated response is already underway and must be expanded rapidly to drought prone areas to hold back its effects to the grave blow that turns itself into hunger.

All the citizens should join hands and come forward to tackle the problem posed by the drought. The efforts citizens are employing in this hard time is impressive and more intensified support is anticipated.

Propelling the situation, the government and partners are endeavouring to further identify the most urgent needs for the coming months. Thus, much more support is urgently needed, as more helping hands give synergy to the effort the nation exerting to mitigate the drought.

Source: theethiopianherald


 

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