Lagos emergency agency calls for synergy

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The Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA has convened a quarterly meeting to address issues on inter-agency collaboration and disaster management.

The meeting was intended to provide workable strategies to renew the confidence in the capacity to rise up to any emergency and disaster challenges in the State.

The Director General, LASEMA, Mr Oke Osanyintolu said that it has become imperative and remained collective responsibility to protect lives and properties which is in line with the policies of the Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu.

Capacity building
He said that ”the meeting was designed towards building more collaboration and opportunities in increasing the capacity building of the stakeholders which will serve as a solid foundation for effective and efficient disaster management in the State.”

“Let me say categorically that this meeting, will also afford us an opportunity of in-depth review and plan of various stakeholders as well as to understand our collective roles in emergency/disaster prevention, preparedness, management, mitigation, response and recovery in the State.

”The Agency is statutorily charged to provide adequate and prompt response as well as sustain intervention on all forms of emergency in the State and within the territorial definition called Lagos through Emergency Management,”Mr Osanyintolu said.

He explained that the law that set up the LASEMA did empower the Agency to coordinate the activities of all its stakeholders and NGO’s who are categorised into Primary, Secondary and Tertiary Responders in all emergency and disaster situations in the State.

Command centres
LASEMA boss noted that his command centres where emergency calls are recieved are now fully operational.

He said: “As part of several measures to tackle these challenges, the repositioning of the Command and Control Centre, which is the nucleus where all emergency calls are activated at ensuring that communication and coordination between responders are handled effectively, regardless of agencies affiliations or event types or size.

”The Command and Control Centre has therefore assisted the escalation of distress calls to appropriate Agencies for prompt and effective interventions as well as to interface with those on the field of operation and the control room personnel for support and necessary deployment in response to most emergency cases in the State.

”Similarly, the repositioning of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency in line with the global standard and in consonance with LASEMA Law of 2015 as (amended) by the Law 2011 establishing the Agency, LASEMA for the establishment of Zonal Rescue Coordinating Centre give room for the Agency to decentralize its operational Centres to cover the three (3) Senatorial District of the State; namely, Lagos West, Lagos East, and Lagos Central Senatorial District with support from the Command & Control Centre Alausa Ikeja, Cappa Dispatch Centre  in Oshodi, Onipanu on Ikorodu Road as well as Lekki Response Unit which is strategically positioned to facilitate quick response to emergencies on the State’s waterways and for the proximity to riverine areas of Lekki and environs.”

He maintained that the agency was proposing capacity building to ensure that all its stakeholders become sufficiently sensitised and enlightened on issues of disasters prevention, response and management.

Fostering relationship
The Wife of Lagos State Governor, Mrs Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu challenged the agencies involved in disaster management to foster cordial relationship and remain committed to saving lives, anytime emergency arises.

Mrs Sanwo-Olu noted that the time of the event was critical as it offers a focal platform to galvanise emergency respondents on how best to work together to achieve results to save lives and properties during emergency situations.

“Since emergency and disaster are inevitable, adequate measures must be formed up to mitigate them and ensure that when they occur, lives are saved and more importantly, they are not allowed to fester.

”Like the medical sector, the major objective of emergency responders is to save lives and it must remain so. Our priority should not and must not be about unnecessary supremacy battle. No agency should think it is more important than others because it is a matter of fact and should be seen as a joint effort while there must be cooperation, constant meetings and mkst importantly, there must be an agenda for emergency procedures in the state,” she explained.

She also called for assistant among the agencies in the event of overlapping of roles and sometime outright need to to take charge of rescue mission.

The wife of the Lagos State Governor was represented by a Consultant Anesthestic, Dr. Mrs Abike Mafe.

The Commander of Lagos State Rapid response Squad, DCP Olatunji Disu, Director General Lagos State Safety Commission, Officials of Federal Road Safety Corps, among others also gave insight into the theme of the event.

The Stakeholders’ meeting was with the theme “Sustaining synergy Amongst Stakeholders in Emergency/Disaster Management : Working Better Together.”

 

Confidence Okwuchi