Dr Wan Azizah

GENEVA: Malaysia will continue to contribute to and promote disaster risk reduction (DRR) at all levels (domestically, regionally and internationally), towards the full implementation of the Sendai Framework.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail said in this regard, Malaysia is also accelerating the pace of change in DRR by supporting development of local DRR strategies and increasing the involvement and participation of local players in the national agenda and programmes on DRR.

“We are also raising awareness and utilisation of the National Platform for DRR, as a forum for strategic partnership, coordination and sharing of good practices.

Dr Wan Azizah

“Additionally, efforts have been made to develop and improve hazard and risk maps, improve spatial planning instruments such as the development of cities’ disaster resilient index guidelines and enforce earthquake resistant building codes,” she said in her national statement at the plenary session of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (GPDRR), here today, in which she was the first speaker.

The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 is a global, voluntary and non-binding agreement that was adopted at the Third UN World Conference for Disaster Risk Reduction and endorsed by the UN General Assembly through Resolution 69/283.

The Sendai Framework recognises that the state has the primary role to reduce disaster risk but that responsibility should be shared with other stakeholders including local governments, the private sector and others.

The Deputy Prime Minister also noted that Malaysia was among the first three countries to complete the reporting of the Sendai Framework Monitor.

Dr Wan Azizah added that Malaysia is also promoting the role of science and technology in supporting risk-informed policy decisions and explore shared-responsibility in DRR, such as to encourage public-private partnership and to establish risk transfer mechanism.

At the same time, the government is also enhancing disaster risk management capabilities in resource mobilisation, communication networks, warning systems, forecasting techniques and capacity building, she said.

The Deputy Prime Minister said Malaysia welcomes the timely convening of the 6th Session of the GPDRR in Geneva, in light of many emerging challenges in the area of disaster risk reduction.

“We look forward to having the opportunity to share, learn and deliberate on the theme of Resilience Dividend: Towards Sustainable and Inclusive Societies in what we regard as an exemplification of positive dialogue between all stakeholders and sharing best practices in DRR,” she said.

Dr Wan Azizah said although Malaysia is not usually affected by disasters on a catastrophic scale, the country nonetheless faced a number of high frequencies, low impact disasters such as floods, landslides and storms throughout the year.

“We also have to deal with man-made disasters such as fires and most recently, chemical pollution,” she noted.

The Deputy Prime Minister said in handling these issues, Malaysia has adopted multi-stakeholder approaches by engaging government agencies, states and local authorities, technical experts, the private sectors and civil society.

She said internationally, Malaysia’s contributions to disaster management is well recognised.

“We are a key actor in regional and international disaster risk reduction initiatives such as, Asean Ministerial Meeting on Disaster Management, Asean Committee on Disaster Management, Asean Regional Forum and the Sendai Framework for DRR. Malaysia is pleased to inform that we are among the first three countries to complete the reporting of the Sendai Framework Monitor,” she said.

At the end of her speech, Dr Wan Azizah invited the GPDRR delegates to attend the 2020 Asia-Pacific Science and Technology Conference for Disaster Risk Reduction from March 16-17 next year in Kuala Lumpur. – Bernama