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Refurbished Emergency Operation Centers Strengthen Disaster Response in Fiji 3/11/16   

 PS MRMD Launches the COmmissioner Western EOC


The newly refurbished Nadi District Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) and the Western Division EOC - Planning Office and Divisional Controller’s Office in Lautoka were opened by the Permanent Secretary for Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management, Mr Meleti Bainimarama yesterday.

The refurbishment of the two EOC's cost FJD $92,236 and has been made possible through the European Union funded ACP-EU Building Safety and Resilience in the Pacific project (BSRP), which is implemented by the Pacific Community (SPC).

Mr Bainimarama said the new office will ensure Government service is not disrupted during an emergency.

“The new office will ensure disaster operations are effectively maintained and services to our people continue when there are disruptions. The new office will further enhance Fiji’s efforts in building resilient people and also strengthen disaster preparedness and management.

“We also acknowledge the kind assistance from the European Union funded ACP-EU BSRP project, which is implemented by the SPC which supported the upgrading of the two EOCs,” said Mr Bainimarama.

The EU Deputy Head of Delegation for the Pacific, Corrado Pampaloni said, ''Resilience is not only recovering and thriving, it is about how to learn from the past to make the future better and how to make your country safer.

''The refurbishment and upgrade of the Nadi Emergency Operations Centre and Lautoka Planning Office and Divisional Controller’s Office funded by the European Union will help to increase safety of Fijian people. The EU is proud to support this programme to help Fiji and the Pacific to cope with climate change and disasters,'' said Pampaloni.

Through the project, the EU has also allocated funds for the refurbishment of the Northern and Eastern Divisional EOCs and National EOC. Work on these will commence soon.

SPC’s Chief Geohazard Scientist, Dr Paul Taylor said, the Pacific Community understands the challenges faced by the region and in partnership with the Government of Fiji is ensuring the capability and capacity to respond to disasters and emergencies is sufficiently addressed for the long-term sustainability of effective disaster preparedness and response into the future.

“Given the Western Division’s geographical location, which makes it more vulnerable to natural disasters, it was key to have a standard EOC where operations can be effectively controlled and managed at district and divisional level during emergencies and disasters,” he said.

The refurbishment work in Nadi EOC included the Operations Room, Planning Room, Communications Room and the District Officers office and briefing room.

In Lautoka, it was necessary to refurbish the Planning Room to fully complement the recently refurbished Divisional EOC. The funding also enabled the relocation of the Commissioner’s Office to be located near to the Operations Room and includes the EOC Planning Room for easy access and forward planning during emergency and disaster operations.

Furthermore, the Commissioner Central Division has also been assisted with thepurchase of equipment to upgrade the Central Division EOC in Nausori.