Managing International Disasters: A Case Study of Floods in Zambia

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In general, this study was about Managing International Flood Disasters using Zambia as a case study. Accordingly, it examined the Role and Capacity of Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) before deliberating the Opportunities and Challenges confronted by DMMU of the Zambian Government and lastly concluded with a number of recommendations that suggests new ways of undertaking and making Flood Disaster Management more relevant to peoples’ lives, assets and their livelihoods and secondly came up with new policy guidelines that would contribute to management of flood disasters at national level in formulating new policies that may stand a taste of time. The study depended largely on secondary data from past research works and that the methodology of data collection was by documentary sampling and other methods were used. A combination of all these methods was used wherever necessary.


The study established that the Role of DMMU in Zambia consist of mitigating the disruption and destructive effect of all disasters in order to reduce their impact on risk and vulnerable communities, assets and the environment, putting in place preventive measures in order to lessen the undesirable effect brought about by flood disasters. This study reviews that the role of the DMMU was to manage and mitigate the adversarial impacts of flood disasters. Regarding the capacity of the DMMU, the Unit had the capacity to manage and mitigate flood disasters. Further, the Opportunities and challenges of the DMMU, was set up to take a leading role when disaster strikes, be it flood or famine and was expected to put in place mitigating factors to reduce the suffering of people affected by man-made or natural disasters and to coordinate the activities of relevant Government ministries and stakeholders’. Likewise, the main challenges of the DMMU were lack of adequate finances.


Finally the study has given recommendations for managing flood disasters in Zambia, some of the major proposals include: the Government should adjust the budgetary allocation upwards to the DMMU; Government should increase the independence of the Lusaka city council so as to let it collect enough revenue from its residents and businesses for improvement of  drainages  and  roads;  the  DMMU  should  involve  the  citizens  or  communities  in  its operations so as to make them understand what the unit was undertaking for them; Government should  put  in  place  stricter  laws  and  policies  that  prevent  resident  from  building  in undesignated areas; the Lusaka City Council in liaison with the Ministry of Lands and other agencies should be proactive in the administration of land to avoid indiscriminate allocation of land by unauthorized people, especially party cadres.

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