By Omeiza Ajayi
ABUJA— As part of efforts to develop a well-coordinated National Emergency Response System, the Federal Government has disclosed plans to audit all emergency response agencies operating in the country to determine their capabilities, both in times of emergency caused by insurgents and in everyday life occurrences.
Those to be audited include National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA; Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps NSCDC; Federal Fire Service, FFS; Federal Road Safety Commission, FRSC; Nigeria Police Force and other local and international humanitarian support organizations.
Minister of State for Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, disclosed this, yesterday, in Abuja when he visited the Director General of NEMA, Mohammed Sani-Sidi.
Ehanire, who stated that he had been consulting with all the MDAs responsible for emergency and disaster management, also added that the ministry would partner with NEMA in responding to the mental health needs of Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, who have suffered emotional damage.
“Experts from the neuro-psychiatric hospitals are already working on how to attend to the emotional health needs of people in the North-East,” he said.
While he recalled government’s plan to establish 10, 000 primary healthcare centres nationwide, the minister said the gesture would form part of the response at the primary healthcare level.
“Locals would be trained to deliver minimal and basic healthcare package. In the North-East, they will include counselling and emotional issues,” he said.
Stating that there is room to improve on Nigeria’s emergency response capabilities, Ehanire said the Federal Government was working to create a national emergency response system that functions in normal day-to-day life which would not just have to do with insurgency alone.