Muscat: People who stepped forward to help rebuild those parts of the Sultanate of Oman that bore the brunt of cyclone Shaheen must be proud of their willingness to help their homeland during its time of need, an officer from the National Committee for Emergency Management (NCEM) has said.
In the wake of Shaheen, hundreds of volunteers from around the country signed up to travel to areas such as North Al Batinah, which saw the most damage from the cyclone. Volunteers either signed up with charitable organisations in their towns and cities, or made arrangements and travelled with community and family members.
“We are so proud of the community reaction before, during, and after cyclone Shaheen,” said Captain Salim Al Rasbi of the NCEM, speaking on the ROP Weekly radio show. “The community is committed to the NCEM instructions and advice during this incident
He added, “Moreover, the whole community is kind enough to volunteer in the recovery effort, and assist the related institutions in their duties. The community contribution was enormous and included many aspects, such as assistance in distributing supplies, volunteering, as well as offering their professional background in engineering, architecture, construction, and many other specialised forms of assistance.”
Al Rasbi said that managing the large numbers of people and resources coming to cyclone-hit areas required a lot of coordination to ensure their safety and security, which was also needed to make sure supplies were delivered in the most effective manner.
The NCEM developed many management plans concerning volunteer management, supply management, and supply supervision and security, in collaboration with the Royal Oman Police, Sultan’s Armed Forces, local communities, and charity organisations.
“The NCEM identified locations for supply storage, and volunteer distribution and their accommodation to ensure effective coordination and management of relief efforts,” explained Captain Al Rasbi. “All of the supply distribution operations are conducted after field teams assess the areas of priority that need to be assisted, to provide a specific type of assistance, whether it is food and water, the needs of the elderly, kids’ accessories, or medical supplies.
“The Royal Oman Police is one component of the NCEM, and our efforts extend to all four phases of the emergency management,” he said.
“From the beginning of the National Committee for Emergency Management’s preparations to deal with cyclone Shaheen, the Royal Oman Police elevated its readiness and mobilised its resources and capabilities to the affected governorates.”
The ROP is also administering the media centre at the NCEM, in coordination with institutions concerned with media information, continues to raise awareness among the public, and releases updates and instructions through media outlets.
Police forces are also involved in search operations for people reported missing in wadis and pools of water, while also providing support through its personnel, medical staff, machinery and equipment.
Other roles of the ROP include the restoration and reopening of roads, cleaning up and moving debris from residential and public areas, transporting water and machinery on trucks, and ensuring areas affected by the cyclone continue to remain safe.