“With the joint effort of people, government, stakeholders and media, Nepal has successfully achieved the greatest accomplishment in DRR/M.”
Recent endorsement of DRR/M bylaws from Council of Ministers has made a new history in the country. Despite Nepal being one of the most disaster-prone countries, the country was unable to establish concrete mechanism. However, the formulation of Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act 2074 paved way for further achievements and effectiveness. Talk of the Town (TOT) a prominent Talk Show for disaster had a long and incessant journey in playing a crucial role for all the legal and practical achievements we have witnessed so far.
The formulation of DRR/M Act in 2074 was itself the greatest achievement but as well as the greatest challenge. The country was left with the responsibility of implementing the Act effectively, for which, lot of orientations, first-hand activities, efforts, risks, coordination, cooperation, collaboration, commitments and actions were needed. Talk of the Town kept on being the major Media Advocate which made all the doubts fade away with time. It brought all the stakeholders, officials, experts, local representatives, governments and people in a common forum and made DRR/M a national issue which later got recognized as one of the national priorities. It took immense effort to support government in the effective implementation of laws and in the mean time, TOT continuously made sure that the people’s voice are heard and there is coordination between governments. There were many challenges but TOT created the situation where slowly, all the problems got addressed one or the other way. Many commitments were pledged from numbers of governmental bodies, leaders, lawmakers and stakeholders and many turned those commitments to realities.
After a year of the formulation of DRR/M Act, draft of DRR/M bylaws were tabled. However, when it faced complications being recognized and addressed in the cabinet, TOT reached to different stakeholders and sought their commitments. With continuous pressure, the draft finally came to Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs and to the Ministry of Home Affairs and lastly. to the Office of Prime Minister and Council of Ministers. Since 2075 was the year for the ‘formulation of laws’, federal government was already occupied in making of other laws. Despite this, albeit delayed, the cabinet successfully endorsed DRR/M bylaws amending some of the clauses under Laws Amendment Act. As per the amendments, DRR/M Council should be established under the convenership of Chief Ministers and Working Committee should be formed under the convernership of Ministry of Internal Affairs and General Administration.
Similarly, as per another notable amendment, National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) will be under Office of Prime Minister and Council of Minister because of which the Authority is expected to work effectively. With the joint effort of people, government, stakeholders and media, Nepal has successfully achieved the greatest accomplishment in DRR/M. But the journey does not step here. This outcome has given rise to another beginning. The nation is yet to see its effective implementation and people, governments and security bodies still need guidance and coordination for which, TOT is still on the run acting as a bridge to empower, assist, guide and made coordination and collaboration possible. All three tiers of government along with general public should earnestly work on the effective implementation. Effective and immediate reconstruction and recovery operations in Bara and Parsa can be the top-priority for now.