Storm check in: FATA Governor orders contingency plan for rains

FDMA official says monitoring in tribal areas weak, areas hard to reach


Our Correspondent March 10, 2016
FDMA official says monitoring in tribal areas weak, areas hard to reach. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD IQBAL/EXPRESS

PESHAWAR: The FATA Disaster Management Authority (FDMA) has ordered all political agents and assistant political agents of the tribal areas to prepare a contingency plan after weather advisories predict extreme weather conditions, senior officials said.

The Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) had issued a weather advisory, warning the decaying phase of the prevailing EI Nino indicated heavy rains in South Asia, including Pakistan, in March.

The directives were issued by Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra on Thursday. According to a statement, he instructed officials of the FATA Disaster Management Authority (FDMA) and relevant departments to remain fully alert and monitor the status of rivers round-the-clock in Fata.

Jhagra also directed all institutions to finalise arrangements without delay to cope with any situation resulting from possible rains and floods in the tribal region.

He ordered FDMA Director General Fayyaz Ali Shah to ensure immediate evacuation is possible if needed. He said any laxity and negligence will not be tolerated and action will be taken against those responsible.

The governor directed departments to ensure necessary equipment was in order. He added the control room should be functional round the clock.

[Un]prepared

A senior official of the FDMA told The Express Tribune these orders were conveyed to political agents of the tribal agencies. “Since we also have to deal with a displaced population living in settled areas, we have to take extra measures,” he said.

He said the political administration was allocated funds to deal with any incident. However, he added the monitoring system in the tribal areas was weak and there were regions difficult to reach if the situation worsened.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 11th, 2016.

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