Government, media must work together to avoid rumours: NCEMA

DMO via Twitter

Government and media needs to work together to prevent rumours and misinformation spreading during crises or emergency situations, according to The National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA).

The Authority organised an interactive knowledge-sharing session on ‘Strategic Crisis Communication and Media Management’, in association with the Government of Dubai Media Office, to discuss case studies and models for the effective management of communication and media during crises and emergency situations.

Attended by representatives of government media offices and media directors of security departments across the UAE, the session highlighted last year's fire at Jebel Ali Port as a case study, where they discussed how effective coordination and close cooperation between various teams and government departments ensured information was relayed accurately across media platforms, preventing rumours and misinformation. 

His Excellency Obaid Rashid Al Hosan Al Shamsi, Vice President of the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority, said that specialised teams need to be trained effectively and detailed crisis plans need to be developed to avoid reactive responses.

Al Shamsi said the management of media is one of the key factors behind the effective management of crises and emergencies of all magnitudes.

"With the UAE’s emergence as a global hub for various sectors, it is vital that we maintain the highest level of strategic preparedness based on simulations of various potential crises. We need to put in place comprehensive plans to deal with all dimensions of a crisis.”

In her address, Her Excellency Mona Ghanem Al Marri, Director General of the Government of Dubai Media Office, commended the exceptional role played by NCEMA in addressing crisis situations and safeguarding the security and stability of the UAE through effective coordination with government agencies. 

She added, "we are keen to share our expertise and experiences in successful strategic crisis communication and media management with various local and federal media offices.

She said it is critical that strategic communication teams constantly and rapidly update media outlets and the public with reliable official information during crises to prevent the spread of rumours and defuse misinformation.

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