UN seeks global help for 1.5 million IDPs in Nigeria
• NEMA assures of safe corridors for humanitarian service
AS the world marks Humanitarian Day, the United Nations (UN) Resident Co-ordinator, Dauda Toure, has urged the international community to brace up to the plights and sufferings of the internally-displaced persons (IDPs) in the North-East, especially against the backdrop of their high number.
Toure, who spoke during the commemoration of the 2015 World Humanitarian Day in Abuja, pointed out that with 1.5 million IDPs, Nigeria has one of the largest numbers of displaced people in the whole world.
He said “We need to remind ourselves that 1.5 million IDPs is one of the biggest number in the world, and they are all in Nigeria and we need to do something about it.
Even though Nigerians are helping themselves because of the 1.5 million IDPs 90 per cent live in host communities.” The UN Resident Co-ordinator blamed the insurgency in the North-East to poor access to security and limited humanitarian access, stressing the need to scale up access to humanitarian assistance so as to reduce vulnerability in the region.
He said the response of the international community needs to be a comprehensive approach so as to reduce the vulnerability and sufferings of the displaced people and to be followed up with rebasing of the Northern Nigeria.
Director-General of National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Mohammadu Sani-Sidi, while speaking on the theme of the celebration “Inspiring the World’s Humanity”, said the aim was to inspire action by people around the world to demonstrate and demand greater humanity and create widespread support for human action, which requires mobilization of a greater and more active global citizenship to advocate for a peaceful and humane world.
The NEMA DG added that in Nigeria, Boko Haram insurgency in the North-East region constitutes the most challenging crisis for government and humanitarian actors in the nation’s history, adding that to guarantee the safety of the humanitarian workers during service delivery in the North-East, NEMA, in liaison with the military, has created safe corridors for movement of humanitarian service providers.
Sani-Sidi pointed out that with the recent liberation of most of the communities hitherto under the occupation of insurgents by the Nigerian military in collaboration with the Multi-National Joint Task Force, the humanitarian outlook in the North-East has changed from that of relief support to recovery and rehabilitation.