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Government poorly equipped to handle disasters: Poll

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The latest nationwide survey, conducted by research firm TNS Lanka for business magazine LMD, reveals that the majority of Sri Lankan citizens hold the view that the state is not properly equipped to handle disasters.   

The magazine says that 50% of those polled say that there is a lack of precautionary measures and systems to inform the public about emergency situations. Meanwhile, 36% are satisfied with the disaster management mechanisms that are in place, with the rest sitting on the fence.

“Approximately 7 in 10 respondents feel that the people themselves react admirably when disaster strikes, whilst pointing out that people tend to gather and help,” stated LMD.

Of the sample population, 46% of the respondents believe that people who are affected by crises are cared for, and some go as far as to say that “irrespective of race the Government takes care of them”. However, almost a quarter disagree with this view and around 30% are unsure.

Interestingly, more than three-quarters (77%) of those surveyed are of the view that the private sector assists with disaster mitigation, whereas only 10% disagree and 13% are uncertain. Furthermore, more than half (54%) believe that aid and donor assistance filter through to victims, while 46% are either unsure or disagree.

A spokesperson for LMD noted that “having a proper weather forecasting system, improving infrastructure survivability, deploying an effective disaster management team, better planning for disaster control and public education on natural disasters are among the suggestions cited by respondents as to what needs to be done to improve disaster management.”

The August edition of the pioneering business magazine has been released to leading supermarkets and bookstores in Colombo and the outstations. 

Its cover story features 22 charismatic business people from Sri Lanka’s contemporary corporate landscape over the last 22 years, coinciding with the 22nd anniversary of Sri Lanka’s pioneering business magazine (for the full story, log onto www.LMD.lk).


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