ISLAMABAD: The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) has responded to a news story headlined ‘Foreign relief workers given marching orders’ published in The Express Tribune on Friday (December 31).
Without contradicting the crux of the story, the NDMA stated “It may be noted that the response to the unprecedented floods in Pakistan in July 2010, had three different phases – relief, early recovery and reconstruction and rehabilitation. Therefore, each phase has its own characteristics and timelines.”
The NDMA said that the government of Pakistan has decided and planned to continue the relief phase till January 31, 2011 in most of the flood-affected areas of Pakistan, except some areas of Balochistan and Sindh where water has still not fully receded. The early recovery phase which has already been initiated is likely to continue till September 2011. While the reconstruction and rehabilitation may take further three to four years, NDMA added.
“The government of Pakistan, while appreciating the contribution of all humanitarian workers and organisations, shall continue facilitating the donor agencies, international organisations, INGOs and NGOs including granting visas to their workers and providing conducive environment to contribute and assist in all phases of the response to Pakistan floods 2010,” said the statement. PR
Qaiser Butt adds:
The NDMA does not essentially deny the crux of the story – that the humanitarian community “has been advised to close their relief operations by the 31st of January, 2011 ‘positively’” – which is based on the authority’s own letter issued on December 29.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 1st, 2011.
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