The Disaster Management business units get their existence from Chapter Four (4) of the National Disaster Management Act No. 57 of 2002.
The Act provides for:

  • An integrated and co-ordinated disaster management policy that focuses on preventing or reducing the risk of disasters, mitigating the severity of disasters, emergency preparedness, rapid and effective response to disasters and post-disaster recovery;
  • the establishment of national, provincial and municipal disaster management centres;
  • disaster management volunteers; and
  • Any other matter that relates to enhancing Disaster Management efforts

Provincial disaster management framework

Each province must establish and implement a framework for disaster management in the province aimed at ensuring an integrated and uniform approach to disaster management in the province by all provincial organs of state, provincial statutory functionaries. non-governmental organisations involved in disaster management in the province and by the private sector.

The provincial disaster management framework must be consistent with the provisions of this Act and the national disaster management framework.

Any amendment thereto. Must;
– be published in the relevant provincial gazette.
– Before establishing or amending a provincial disaster
management framework, particulars of the proposed framework or amendment must be published in the relevant for gazette provincial public comment

Disaster Management Centres

All Province must have Provincial Disaster Management Centres (PDMC). The PDMC forms part of and functions the Department.

Powers and duties

The PDMC must:

  • specialise in issues concerning disasters and disaster management in the province;
  • must promote an integrated and co-ordinated approach to disaster management in the province, with special emphasis on prevention and
    (i) Provincial organs of state in the province; and
    (ii) Other role-players involved in disaster management in the province:
  • must act as a repository of, and conduit for, information concerning disasters.
  • impending disasters and disaster management in the province;
  • may act as an advisory and consultative body on issues concerning disasters and disaster management in the province to-
    (i) Organs of state and statutory functionaries:
    (ii) The private sector and non-governmental organisations; and
    (iii) Communities and individuals;
  • must make recommendations regarding the funding of disaster management in the province, and initiate and facilitate efforts to make such funding available;
  • may make recommendations to any relevant organ of state or statutory functionary-
    (i) on draft legislation affecting this Act. the national disaster management issues
    (ii) on the alignment of provincial or municipal legislation with this Act and the national disaster management framework or
    (iii) in the event of a provincial disaster on whether a provincial state of disaster should be declared
  • must promote the recruitment, training and participation of volunteers in disaster management in the Province
  • must promote disaster management capacity building, training and education, including in schools .
  • may promote research into all aspects of disaster management in the province:

A provincial disaster management centre may engage in any lawful activity in the province, whether alone or together with any other organisation aimed at promoting the proper exercise of its powers or performance of its duties.

A provincial disaster management centre must liaise and co-ordinate its activities with the National Centre and the municipal disaster management centre in the province.

Head of provincial disaster management centre

The MEC for Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs appoints the head of the provincial disaster management centre. A person appointed as the head of a provincial disaster management centre holds office on terms and conditions set out in a written employment contract which must
include terms and conditions setting performance standards.

The head of a provincial disaster management centre

  • is responsible for the exercise by the centre of its powers and the performance of its duties; and
  • takes all decisions of the centre in the exercise of its powers and the performance of its duties except decisions taken by another person in consequence of a delegation by the head of the centre.




The Provincial Disaster Management Committee participated at the IDP Assessment Week and municipalities were assisted to foster alignment of Integrated Development Plans (IDPs) and Disaster Management Sector Plans. A presentation on the alignment of Disaster Management Sector Plans with the Integrated Development Plan was presented to the municipal IDP Managers Forum during the Sustainable Living Exhibition in August 2012. The approved guideline template for Disaster Management Sector Plans was then made available to the Municipal IDP Managers. The guideline template is currently implemented by Municipal IDP Managers in preparation for the 2013 Municipal Integrated Development Plan Assessment.

The PDMC continuously participated at the District Disaster Management Advisory Forums and supported municipalities financially and provided them with technical support during incidents.

Awareness campaigns were held in all ten districts and the metro with the intention of creating resilient communities on disaster management. Campaigns were also held with different schools. Capacity Building workshops were held with districts. The University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) is finalising the Disaster Management Curriculum as courses will be offered by the institution which will lead to people received a fully accredited qualification in Disaster Management.

The Volunteer Strategy of the Department was presented and distributed at the Disaster Management Workshop. Furthermore, the Strategy was workshopped to relevant stakeholders at District Disaster Management Advisory Fora. The Provincial Disaster Management Centre (PDMC) further trained targeted municipalities (uThukela, Amajuba, UMkhanyakude District Municipalities) on the strategy to enable them to implement through train-the-trainer approach.

The final report on fire preparedness is in place and it will inform support that the Provincial Disaster Management Centre should provide to municipalities either internally or by engaging other stakeholders that are willing to assist in ensuring that the Fire Services function is improved within the province.
Department also assisted District Municipalities with Disaster Management Support to ensure readiness to deal with disasters throughout the province.

The Provincial Disaster Management Centre will continue to provide intervention support to the first line clients, being the municipalities, to deal with the disaster management issues and associated implications. Disaster mitigation and contingency plans to support municipalities to deal with the effects of climate change will be improved. This will include participation in climate change council and implementing the outcomes thereof. Awareness campaigns and interventions will be concentrated in low-lying areas that are in the flood plains. Campaigns on evacuation and resettlement issues will be implemented to educate people from the various district municipalities. Provincial Disaster Management will actively engage the Departments of Human Settlements, Health, Transport and Education as well as municipalities on the reconstruction of damaged houses, schools, hospitals and infrastructure.

The implementation of Section 81 has been hailed as a success for both the institution of Traditional Leadership and Municipalities to engage in a formalised environment on issues of service delivery enabling traditional leaders to undertake their developmental role effectively and not to be the passive recipients of services. Selected Amakhosi who serve in the various municipalities will be provided capacity building programmes so that they can play a meaningful role through their participation.



The Provincial Disaster Management Centre (PDMC) is mandated to enhance disaster management capacity in the province and also to perform a co-ordination role to ensure a functional relationship between municipalities, organs of state, civil society, and regional bodies in disaster risk management.

The PDMC also has a legislative mandate to enhance capacity of, and coordination between, disaster risk management stakeholders.

In 2010 the PDMC developed and published the Policy Framework for Disaster Risk Management in the Province of KwaZulu-Natal to meet the provisions of Section 28 of the Disaster Management Act, Act No. 57 of 2002.

In 2011, the PDMC also embarked on the process of developing a Provincial Disaster Management Plan in line with Section 39 of the Disaster Management Act.


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