Disaster management centre opens

2015-12-03 06:00
PHOTO: norman hlophe Ugu Mayor, Ntombifikile Gumede (left) and MEC for Cogta, Nomusa Dube-Ncube, cut the ribbon to officially open the Ugu Disaster Management Centre.

PHOTO: norman hlophe Ugu Mayor, Ntombifikile Gumede (left) and MEC for Cogta, Nomusa Dube-Ncube, cut the ribbon to officially open the Ugu Disaster Management Centre.

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THE Ugu District Municipality opened its disaster management centre on Saturday­.

Plans for the building, which is in Marburg, started in November 2013 with a sod-turning ceremony.

KZN Cogta and the district municipality provided funding to the tune of R15.9 million for the first phase of the project.

It comprises of the disaster management block of offices and the external works and earthworks, which are part of phase two.

The second phase of the centre will be completed with the construction of the council chambers and phase three will be the fire and rescue unit.

“The opening of this centre is bright on the horizon of our people‘s lives. For all of us this centre represents the undying hope that the brutal impact of disasters in our district can be easily dealt with,” said Ugu mayor, Ntombifikile Gumede.

The centre will support six local municipalities - Hibiscus, Umzumbe, Umuziwabantu­, Ezinqoleni, Umdoni and Vulamehlo.

An amount of R25 million is still required to complete the second phase.

Gumdede asked MEC for Corporative Governance and Traditional Affairs Nomusa­ Dube-Ncube, who was at the event, for the money to be made available­.

She said over the past month the district has incurred incidences of excessive lightning in Umuziwabantu where lives were lost.

“We are exposed to a wide range of weather hazards, including drought, fires and severe storms that can trigger widespread hardship and devastation,” she said.

“In addition to these natural and human­-induced threats and despite on-going progress to extend essential services­ to rural communities, large numbers­ of people live in conditions of chronic disaster vulnerability – in underserved, ecologically fragile or marginal areas where they face recurrent natural and other threats that range from drought to repeated storms and fires,” added Gumede­.

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