Enabling Policy Environment: Contingency Plan Development

Cities in Ghana, like anywhere else in sub-Saharan Africa, have grown substantially over the past decades. Rapid urbanization has outpaced the capacity of the authorities to plan and sustainably manage cities. Consequently, urban planning lags urban growth. Overall, the sprawling of towns has increased poverty and income inequality and has resulted in the growth of informal settlements and increased disasters.

In Accra, flooding, fires, diarrheal disease have become perennial events. In recent years, there has been a high incidence of disasters occurring every year, leaving negative impacts on both lives and livelihoods. Strengthening preparedness for and response to emergency situations at national and district levels are critical to saving lives, protecting livelihoods, and enhancing the recovery process from disasters, to successfully avert and mitigate the negative impacts that affect resources, assets, and the society. Contingency planning is a key preparedness and response tool, a mandatory part of an Integrated Disaster Risk Management Approach (IDRM). The contingency plan ensures that cities know what to do when a disaster strikes and have the systems and tools to respond fast.