The Department of Disaster Management Affairs (Dodma) has asked district councils in the country to end dependency syndrome that has led to communities relying on government and development partners for survival during disasters.
Dodma commissioner for disaster management affairs Charles Kalemba said this on Tuesday in Nkhotakota and Nkhata Bay districts during a meeting with council officials on disaster risk management and state of disaster preparedness.
He said councils have instilled a spirit of laziness in people as they have made them believe that government and development partners are there to provide humanitarian aid during disasters.
Said Kalemba: “The department has noted with great concern that people exaggerate disasters to attract more relief items in their areas which has had a huge effect on the country’s economy.
“The media too has provided wrong information. For example, we got an alarming report that many houses in Mzuzu City had been affected by flash floods and that many people were homeless.”
But he said when Dodma officials went to appreciate the situation, they were shocked to note that what was reported on social media was not what was on the ground.
“Only two houses were affected and the houses were constructed along the river bank,” said Kalemba.
He asked councils to stop people from constructing houses along river banks.
On his part, Nkhotakota acting district commissioner Ben Tonho commended Dodma for working towards building a resilient nation.
Dodma has been engaging councils to appreciate the status of their disaster preparedness.
A report by the Department of Meteorological Services and Climate Change on the 2021/22 rainfall season forecast indicates that the country will experience normal to above normal rains which might trigger the occurrence of floods in some areas.