Government has been advised to increase funds meant for the disaster sector, but also enhance its efforts in disaster risk reduction in Uganda.
Robert Kwesiga, Secretary General of Uganda Red Cross Society, said that lack of adequate funds has frustrated efforts to manage disasters in the country.
“when a disaster happens, we are asked to go and write a proposal, that takes time yet the people displaced will not wait for that process,” Kwesiga said.
He asked MPs when appropriating funds, to also prioritize money for disaster management which will improve preparedness and detection.
Kwesiga asked government to commit itself to forecast based financing , a mechanism that uses climate and weather forecasts to enable timely disbursement of funds to implement advanced preparedness actions before a potential disaster happens and early action interventions.
He said that Disasters are on the increase and their impact on lives is enormous, “We need to continue talking about them for public and decision makers to appreciate these concepts.”
He made the remarks on Tuesday during a stakeholders meeting between Red Cross and MPs from a number of parliamentary committees at Imperial Royale hotel in Kampala.
The meeting aimed at ensuring practicable ways in which the MPs can support and advance the cause of the Uganda Red Cross Society, as well as discuss disaster risk reduction agenda in regards anticipatory action, focused based financing and early warning and early action.
Meanwhile, Raymond Kirungi, the disaster preparedness officer in the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) acknowledged that more needs to be done if disasters are to be decreased in the country.
Kirungi told MPs that government is committed to playing its role in lives and livelihoods of persons and communities and also in ensuring that disasters affecting communities are reduced.
He appreciated the Uganda Red Cross Society for its role in disaster management and preparedness in the country.
Speaking at the same meeting, MPs agreed that funding to the disaster sector is still low.
They called on government to commit enough resources to help avert and deal with disasters.
They insisted that government ought to take disaster management as a priority and commit resources for it.
MPS further asked government to commit some funds to the works of Red Cross, since they’re front line partners in Disaster management and Preparedness.
The meeting comes on the backdrop of floods that hit Kasese district, and some parts in the Elgon Region, following heavy downpours.