The Garissa county government has launched the Gender and Disaster Risk Management (DRM) policies that will provide guidelines on institutionalization of gender strategies in the area.
The launch was presided over by the county secretary Abdi Sheikh and WFP Country Director Lauren Landis in a colourful ceremony held at a Garissa hotel.
Garissa becomes the 7th county in the country to pass and officially launch Gender policy. It is also the 4th to pass and officially launch a Disaster Risk Management Policy.
Speaking after the launch, the county secretary said that the policies will also ensure that the rights of women, men, boys and girls are promoted, protected and realized.
Sheikh said that the disaster risk management policy will help in preparedness, prevention, protection, recovery and provision of relief to the victims of drought, floods, conflicts, human and livestock disease epidemics.
He added that the disaster risk management policy shall also help in building resilience to the communities prone to disasters, ease response, and prevent risks of disasters.
WFP has provided technical assistance to the County Government in supporting comprehensive consultations by all relevant stakeholders in the development of the two policies.
On her part, the WFP country representative Lauren Landis said that the launch of the policy document was a move in the right direction and will provide a sectoral-based framework toward attainment of gender equality.
“The launch of these two policies is a momentous occasion for Garissa County as it provides a sectoral-based framework, towards attainment of gender equality and women’s empowerment,” Lauren said.
“The DRM Policy is a major step towards achieving sustainable development through ensuring that disaster risk management is integrated in development planning by all sectors of the county,” she added.
Others who partnered in the development of the Gender Policy alongside WFP were civil organizations namely ADSE Eastern, WOKIKE, PGI, ACTIONAID, EACH Rights, Kenya Red Cross Society, LMS, MUHURI, UNHCR, UNICEF and NGEC.
Present were County Attorney Ismail Dabar, Deputy Director Gender Ahmed Hante, Assistant Director Special Programmes Abdullahi Yussuf and WFP Garissa Office Head Yussuf Ali among others.
By Jacob Songok