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State of Emergency declared as the country faces national disaster due to drought

State of Emergency declared as the country faces national disaster due to drought

The President, HE Dr Nangolo Mbumba has declared a State of Emergency: National Disaster effective from 22 May, the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) announced in a statement on Tuesday.

This declaration, by Article 26(1) of the Namibian Constitution and Section 30(3) of the Disaster Risk Management Act, 2012 (Act No. 10 of 2012), highlights the urgent need for intervention as drought ravages all 14 regions of the country.

According to a statement issued by the OPM spokesperson, Rhingo Mutambo, the decision to declare a state of emergency is prompted by several factors, including the widespread prevalence of drought conditions across the nation, which have had a detrimental impact on the population.

The drought poses a significant threat to the livelihoods of affected households, necessitating relief interventions to mitigate its adverse effects, he said.

“Additional resources are required to complement the Government’s budget of N$825 million, which is provided to finance the implementation of the drought relief programme for the drought period in the 2024/25 financial year,” he added.

The declaration underscores the severity of the situation and serves as a call to action for the private sector, development partners, and the international community to assist the government in fully implementing the drought relief program and safeguarding lives and livelihoods, he said.

Namibia’s declaration of a state of emergency meanwhile aligns with similar actions taken by other Southern African Development Community (SADC) member states facing comparable drought situations. In a collective effort, SADC Heads of State have endorsed the SADC Drought Appeal, issuing a joint call for assistance to affected member states.

As part of the response, the government further urged Namibians to prioritize assistance to the most vulnerable individuals and communities to ensure the protection of their livelihoods.


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