Borno lawmakers cry out over shortage of food in northeast
Members of the Borno State Caucus in the National Assembly have cried to the Federal Government and international donor agencies for help over deteriorating humanitarian crisis in the state.
They said the liberation of the Northeast from Boko Haram insurgents have resulted in starvation, as the state government cannot shoulder the responsibility of catering for internally displaced persons (IDPs).
Speaking at a press conference in Abuja on behalf of other lawmakers, Senator Mohammed Ali Ndume, noted that over 100, 000 people have lost their lives, as a result of the crisis.
They also called for a review of the proposed 2017 budgetary allocation of N45b to the Presidential Committee on Northeast Initiative (PCNI) to N100b, describing the current proposal as inadequate to cater for the humanitarian challenges in the region.
“In the 2016 Appropriation Act, only N12b was allocated to PINE to address the humanitarian crisis in the Northeast, out of which only 75 percent was released. This is less than 10 percent of the $449m contributed by international donor countries and agencies.
“In the 2017 Budget proposal under consideration by NASS, only N45b is allocated to PCNI. This is grossly inadequate to address the emergency humanitarian crisis we are faced with, compared to the $1.0b, which is equivalent to over N305b that the international donor countries and agencies are trying to raise,” they said.
The lawmakers also expressed worry over what they called the near absence of relevant government agencies in the affected areas, compared with the number of foreign NGOs or groups rendering support services for the IDPs.
The lawmakers, therefore, advocated a nine-point demands needed to save more lives and assist people in Northeast as adopted by NGOs operating in the affected areas, including, the prioritisation of the protection of civilians, an urgent scale up of the food and nutrition response and increased access to more, better and safe quality education.