The Government of the Federal Republic of Somalia has signed the ARC Treaty and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the African Risk Capacity (ARC) to work together towards helping the country better prepare, plan and respond to extreme weather events and natural disasters.
A joint statement says the ARC Treaty and MoU were signed in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia by Khadija Diriye, the country’s Minister of Humanitarian Affairs & Disaster Management.
Somalia’s Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs & Disaster Management initiated an engagement with ARC in September 2018 to explore ways of diversifying existing disaster risk management approaches, particularly, through a sovereign and parametric insurance mechanism following the country’s exposure to both drought and flood risks which threatens the national economy; requiring pre-emptive disaster risk reduction strategies to improve multi-hazard early warning, preparedness, and national coordination for disaster response.
In her official statement, Diriye decried natural disasters and terrorism that is affecting the wellbeing of the people, ”Somalia’s hazard profile is dominated by droughts, floods, tropical cyclones, desert locust, diseases (epidemic/pandemic), and terrorism that disrupt people’s livelihoods, destroy the infrastructure, divert planned use of resources, interrupt economic activities and retard development.” He said.
“The impacts of natural hazards do not occur in isolation; but recognition of such cause and effect on a national scale has encouraged the Government of Somalia in taking on a paradigm shift from crisis management to risk management. This will enable us to utilise our finite resources in a more efficient and timely manner towards assisting the vulnerable populations in the event of disasters. Diriye added.
Hon. Khadija Mohamed Diriye, Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, Federal Republic of Somalia with ARC and AU representatives after the signing of the Treaty at the AU Headquarters, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
According to the statement, the signing of the MoU will set out the terms, conditions and a framework to facilitate cooperation between ARC and Government to address the impact of extreme weather events, including providing training support to Government personnel as well as preparing Somalia’s potential participation in future ARC (drought/flood/tropical cyclone) insurance risk pools.
For his part, the UN-ASG and ARC Group-Director General, Ibrahima Diong, said a joint risk strategy would better protect the continent from disasters. “As the nature and intensity of natural catastrophes evolve across the region, we maintain that the continent will be better protected through a pooled-risk approach bringing together countries and leveraging smart partnerships.