OVERWHELMING PANDEMIC, OVERWHELMED BY FATALIST MINDSET IN PAKISTAN

20 May 2020

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Pakistan is prone to multiple disasters. – drought, earthquake, landslide, flash flooding, epidemics, pollution, industrial, cyclones etc. Flooding has been the most frequent and wide spread phenomenon. This list has become longer since February 2020. Like all other countries, Pakistan is being hit badly by yet another calamity – COVID-19.


According to the Federal Flood Commission between 1950 and 2015, the country suffered from 23 super floods. The total economic loss was equal to USD 40 billion. At the time of writing this report, Pakistan has less than 1,000 deaths from COVID-19, but the economic and social impact could be [massively] larger than all the past floods combined. Unlike other disasters, it has hit every person in every corner of the country though unequally. It has made the poor, poorer.


Reports show that unemployment, poverty; indebtedness and criminalization have already increased manifold and this may continue to rise in the coming months and years. Gender-based violence has also spiked. Due to a prolonged lockdown, the psychological health of large numbers may also be an issue. What must be feared the most in these circumstances is the occurrence of another disaster? A locust attack is already on the horizon.


The flood season is fast approaching. Is the country prepared to cope with floods, while fighting COVID-19 and its impact? If the past is any guide, the obvious answer is NO.


Poverty is deepening and spreading, so is the subjugation of the poor and the domination of the elite, political stability in such circumstances becomes fragile. Any mishap can trigger unrest if the authorities fail to fulfill the needs of the population.


Interestingly, even in rich and established democracies, inequality has once again become a loud cry.

Powerful voices are trying to make inequality a major policy issue as scholars, researchers and activists have started pointing out the relationship between pandemics and political upheavals. According to Walter Scheidel, pandemics, warfare, revolution and state collapse levels income inequalities. In his recent op-ed article “The Wealthy Fear Every Pandemic”, he observes, “elites did not readily cede ground, even under extreme pressure after a pandemic. Today America faces a fundamental choice between defending the status quo and embracing progressive change.


The current crisis could prompt redistributive reforms akin to those triggered by the Great Depression and World War II, unless entrenched interests prove too powerful to overcome.”


Continue reading the full report here.

Pakistan

  • Programs

  • CRISIS IN CRISIS: MITIGATING AND MINIMIZING THE UNWANTED STRESSORS

    Global

    Speakers: Mayfourth Luneta (Center for Disaster Preparedness, Philippines); Dr. Khin Maung Win (Community Development Association, Myanmar); and Dr. Manu Gupta (SEEDS India)

    Moderator: Dr. Hariyati Sharima (MERCY Malaysia)

    Wednesday, 15 July 2020 14:00 Kuala Lumpur / 12:30 Yangon / 11:30 Delhi


    bit.ly/37oZvIi

    7 July 2020

  • WEBINAR: PANDEMIC RISK REDUCTION IN THE CONTEXT OF RURAL SETTINGS

    Global

    Speakers: Datuk Dr. Heng Aik Cheng (MERCY Malaysia) and Dr.Amod Mani Dixit (National Society for Earthquake Technology - Nepal)

    Moderator: Dr. Mohammad Iqbal Omar (MERCY Malaysia)

    Wednesday, 1 July 2020 14:00 Kuala Lumpur / 11:45 Kathmandu


    bit.ly/3fbLosm

    26 June 2020

  • WEBINAR: PANDEMIC RISK REDUCTION IN THE CONTEXT OF URBAN SETTINGS

    Global

    Speakers: Masniza Mustaffa (MERCY Malaysia) and Mihir Joshi (SEEDS India) 

    Moderator: Dr. Peter Gan (MERCY Malaysia) 

    Wednesday, 17 June 2020 14:00 Kuala Lumpur / 11:30 Delhi 


    bit.ly/37lsPPG

    16 June 2020

  • WEBINAR: HUMANITARIAN COORDINATION DURING COVID-19

    Global

    When: June 11, 2020

    What time: 2:00 PM (Pakistan Standard Time)

    Where: ZOOM – Link to be shared to registered participants

    Language: English

    How long: 90 minutes

    Who is it for: Humanitarian and development practitioners working in or with hard-to-reach areas, NGOs and INGOs involved in COVID19 response

    Format: Panel discussion

    Speakers/Panelists: Qingrui Huang (ICVA), Hafiz Amirrol (ADRRN) and Dear NB Sinandang (HFI)

    Moderator/Presenter: Takeshi Komino (ADRRN)


    Register here: Webinar on Humanitarian Coordination During COVID-19


    Purpose

    COVID-19 pandemic presents unique challenges to the global humanitarian sector. Individuals, organizations as well as networks are all effected by this directly or indirectly. There is a need to work together with governments, NGOs and other stakeholder to serve communities and complement the joint efforts in combating COVID-19.


    Given the probability that the pandemic may last for an extended period, it is timely and imperative to discuss the behaviors, expertise and capacity both at individual and institutional level to facilitate humanitarian community in responding to the pandemic. The best possible way is to work together, build on the expertise of each other and jointly respond.


    This webinar will bring together a panel of speakers with diverse backgrounds related to humanitarian and development affairs to discuss how the current COVID-19 experience impact the future of the humanitarian sector with reference to coordination. It will provide an opportunity to:

    • Explore coordination aspect in global and regional policy dialogue on humanitarian landscape in COVID-19 context (Global Humanitarian Response Plan, humanitarian financing, IASC guidelines on Localization).

    • Identify case studies on different aspects of coordination in COVID-19 preparedness and response      activities from International Council of Voluntary Agencies (ICVA), Asian Disaster Reduction and Response Network (ADRRN) and Humanitarian Forum Indonesia (HFI). These include strategic plans, action plans, challenges and best practices.

    • Facilitate exchange between networks themselves for good practices and lessons learned with reference to coordination.


    The webinar will further engage its audience (panelists and participants) to explore:

    • What are the emerging trends/good practices in the space of coordination among NGOs that would continue even beyond COVID-19?

    • What are some Innovative ways to resolve coordination challenges during COVID-19?

    • How to ensure monitoring, evaluation, accountability, data and information sharing during COVID-19?

    • What are the associated challenges in terms of community engagement and risk communication?

    • How is stretching capacity within NGOs/CSOs in dealing with COVID-19 response and natural disasters?

    • What are some of the opportunities emerged for NGOs due to COVID-19?

    • What will the localization look like during new normal situation?

    4 June 2020

RECENT NEWS

Asian Disaster Reduction and Response Network is a network consists of 52 national and international NGOs from more than 20 countries across the Asia-Pacific region. With a strong footprint in the region, the network members are constantly engaged with local communities strengthening their ability to combat disasters, providing humanitarian aid like food, water, shelter and health care, protecting critical facilities like schools and hospitals, creating awareness, advocating for policy changes and improving the capacity of community based organizations.

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F: +603 7733 4920

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