The Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) on Friday graduated 63 Senegalese and 62 Togolese in disaster preparedness and management under the West Africa Disaster Preparedness Initiative (WADPI).
WADPI training programme is being organized by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), in collaboration with the KAIPTC and the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) for representatives from the governments of ECOWAS Member States from July to November 2015.
The programme is being supported by the United States Department of Defense, the US Africa Command (USAFRICOM) and the Operation United Assistance (OUA) Transition Disaster Preparedness Project.
The team which is being led by Major Francis Obuseh, is to support the implementation of the health track of the WADPI programme.
Air Commodore JSK Dzamefe, the Deputy Commandant, KAIPTC in his closing remarks said the KAIPTC
remains a centre of excellence aimed at providing quality training facilities and expertise for disaster operations and peace support operations training.
He lauded the various stakeholders involved in the organisation of the programme such as the US Government, ECOWAS and NADMO.
He praised the Senegalese and Togolese contingents for participating in the training programme, and urged them to impact their new knowledge towards strengthening disaster management in their respective countries.
The Senegalese and Togolese participants are the second batch of ECOWAS member states to be trained at the KAIPTC.
The main objective of the three-week training for West Africa region is to utilize lessons learned from the recent Ebola epidemic, and strengthen national capacities among 17 West African Partner Nations (PNs).
It also seeks to implement an all-hazards approach to disaster preparedness and response management to ensure continued regional collaboration, communication and coordination between member States in disaster preparedness and response.
Training efforts focused on building the capacity of officials responsible for disaster preparedness and management regarding the lessons learned from the current Ebola crisis and to establish a foundation for a national-level, systems-based approach to preparedness.
Ms Sarah Danso, the Course Coordinator said much progress would be achieved within collaborative dialogue framework focused on building the capacity of ECOWAS Member States to coordinate regional efforts in disaster preparedness.
Brigadier General Francis Vib Sanziri, NADMO Coordinator urged ECOWAS Member States to collaborate with each other in times of disaster.
Mr Lo Mare, Technical Adviser to the Senegalese Minister for Interior said his government has a strong political will in disaster management.
Mr Essoh Wella, Togolese Ambassador to Ghana, said the effects of disaster could reduce through good planning and coordination between civilians and the military.
He also praised the US Government for supporting Togo in disaster management and other areas over the years. GNA