The Hyogo framework for action and its implications for disaster management and reduction in Africa
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At the World Conference on Disaster Reduction, Hyogo, Japan, in January 2005, the international community adopted a 10-year plan to make the world safer from disasters. The resultant Hyogo Framework for Action is the global blueprint for disaster risk reduction with the goal of substantially reducing disaster losses in human lives and socio-economic assets. What is the signi!cance of the HFA for the adoption of disaster prevention, management and risk reduction frameworks in African States? Since 2005, what has been the attitude of African States to the promise of the HFA? In terms of policy and planning, how should African States engage the HFA towards securing human lives and properties against natural and human-induced disasters? With the myriad challenges of mass poverty and underdevelopment across Africa, what implications does the HFA hold for disaster risk reduction and management in African States? This article attempts to address this plethora of questions, drawing on lessons learned in Africa and beyond. The article examines the background of the HFA and its progress in shaping the global policy agenda towards disaster management and reduction. While the article acknowledges some of the inherent weaknesses in the promise of the HFA, it nonetheless accentuates its inimitable implications for broad legal and policy strategies towards ameliorating the usual horrific aftermath of disasters in Africa.