Gauteng Cooperative Governance commemorates annual International Day for Disaster Reduction

Gauteng Provincial Disaster Management Centre commemorates annual International Day for Disaster Reduction

Gauteng Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA)’s Provincial Disaster Management Centre (PDMC) together with City of Joburg Metropolitan Municipality commemorated the annual International Day for Disaster Reduction (IDDR) in Diepsloot yesterday, 20 October 2016.

The objective of the observance of this day is to raise awareness of how people are taking action to reduce the risk to disasters. It is also a day to encourage every citizen to take part in building more disaster resilient communities and nations.

The IDDR is celebrated on 13 October every year as per Resolution 64/200 of the United Nations General Assembly; which, amongst other deliverables, reaffirmed the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction as the primary mechanism for development, promotion and improvement of disaster reduction method.

The 2016 United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR)/IDDR was commemorated under the theme “Reducing Disaster Mortality” with the slogan: “Live To Tell”. PDMC focused on edutainment of Grade 5 leaners from three different schools in the Diepsloot area.

Representing PDMC, Von Roy de Beer enlightened the school learners and their educators about the importance of reducing risks to disasters. He also said that every citizen has a role to play in ensuring “we reduce disaster mortality”. “IDDR is everyone’s responsibility. Although it is government’s responsibility to execute the strategies, we cannot do it without every one of you; our community members,” de Beer said.

MMC for Public Safety in the city, Cllr Michael Sun, encouraged the learners to respect officials in uniform. “Our police officers, traffic officers, firefighters, Emergency Management Services and also those officials from the province are our heroes. They spend less time with their families so that we can spend more time with ours. Show them respect at all times,” Cllr Sun said, adding that “we are all here today because there are people who make our areas safe.”

He also reminded the kids that reducing disaster risks is not only a grown-up’s responsibility, but theirs as well. “You do not know when you might safe someone. It is therefore important that you start learning today. You too can be a hero. Ensure you use all you have learned today to educate others,” Cllr Sun concluded.

Source: Government of South Africa.