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NCDM, NGO continue work on early disaster alarm plans

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NCDM and People in Need representives sign the MoU in Phnom Penh on Friday. NCDM

NCDM, NGO continue work on early disaster alarm plans

The National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) and the humanitarian relief NGO People in Need continue to strengthen their cooperative efforts towards the implementation of the disaster early warning system in Cambodia, which aims to help the public and authorities respond to disasters in a more timely manner.

NCDM spokesman Khun Sokha said on May 1 that the continuing work in the implementation of the system was mostly related to getting more people to participate by registering for it as soon as possible.

“The purpose of continuing this project is to strengthen the scope of who gets warned to a greater extent and thereby release information to more people to give warning to them in a timely manner,” he said.

The NCDM and People in Need signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to continue the implementation of the 1294 Early Response System, Flood Resistance and Disaster Response in Cambodia on April 29.

Sokha said people could register for the system by calling the number 1294 for free and then following the instructions.

After registration, if there is an urgent message from the warning system, mobile service providers will send out a voicemail to all registered mobile numbers to alert their owners in advance of any disasters about to take place.

“The voicemail will go through three mobile network providers: Metfone, Smart and Mobitel. If people register their phone numbers from any of these networks, they will get a warning sent to them. For example, it could tell them that in two hours or in three more days, there may be heavy rain and strong winds with potential for flooding in a given area,” he said.

Lukas Laube, country representative for People in Need, stated that the purpose of the MoU was to strengthen the relationship between the NCDM and his organisation so they can work together and continue implementing the system on a wider basis.

“This MoU will be valid for three consecutive years from the date of signing,” he said.

NCDM vice-president Hang Sam Oeun spoke highly of People in Need in for the job it has done working with the NCDM from 2014 to the present.

“The 1294 early warning system has been expanded nationwide while still being recognised as a system that is managed and controlled by the NCDM,” he said.

He encouraged People in Need to bolster their active and close ties with the NCDM by preparing action plans for the implementation of consulting projects, workshops, training and other activities.

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