Director General, National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, has said there is need for adequate recognition to be given to women in disaster risk management.
Alhaji Sani Sidi stated this yesterday in Abuja at a conference on mainstreaming gender issues in disaster management. He pointed out that women are marginalized in the development of disaster risk management policies, adding that, in decision making their voices usually go unheard.
Sani explained that evidence from good practices of gender sensitive disaster risk management worldwide, both men and women benefit from a gender balanced approach to disaster risk management. He explained that although women are more vulnerable than men, the continuous focus on women’s vulnerabilities alone can be contentious, adding that it promotes the perception of women as victims rather than seeing them as capable and equal actors in building resilient communities.
The director general added that one reason why there is a need to mainstream gender in disaster management and program is due to the current little understanding both as policy and operational levels.
“Gender equality in disaster management does not merely imply the addressing of women’s humanitarian issues; it also includes addressing concerns of both men and women, the relationships between them and the root causes of these imbalances”, he noted.
The conference with the theme: ‘gender and disaster risk management: towards a gender sensitive disaster management policy framework in Nigeria’ is aimed at bringing to the fore robust gender perspective in disaster risk management in the country.

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