NGO wants FG to empower IDPs with skills


The Community Development and Welfare of the Less Privileged Initiative (COWEPI), a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), has urged the Federal Government to avail Internally Display Persons (IDPs) with skills.

Executive Director of the organisation, Mr Haruna Ikotu, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Wednesday.

Ikotu said that the IDPs could be trained on various agro-allied skills such as food processing and various modern agricultural techniques to make them self-reliant and self-sufficient in food production.

He said, ‘’it is our belief that the IDPs really need improved government assistance to enable them pick the pieces of their lives having passed through the harrowing experience forced on them by Boko Haram insurgency.

‘’Many of them can be trained on how to process food and engage in other modern agriculture to be useful to themselves and to the larger society in terms of food production”.

Ikotu, who lamented that the children of the IDPs had been out of school due to the insurgency, also called on the government to reconstruct the schools to enable the children to continue their education.

On the effort of COWEPI in cushioning the effect of the insurgency on the people, he said that the NGO had taken care for the IDPs as its cardinal programme.

Toward this, he said that members of the organisation had been visiting various IDP camps in the FCT to extend hands of fellowship and plan to offer various self-sustaining training for them.

‘’Right now, plans are on for more visits to IDP camps in the territory where we will train them on various agricultural businesses.

‘’By the time they return to their various ancestral homes, their minds and hands will be engaged in meaningful activities as they must have been trained in various skills’’.

Ikotu called for government support for the NGO, especially on logistics and security of its personnel while discharging their duties to IDPs in North-East region.

He said that the NGO was liaising with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the National Planning Commission in terms of assisting the IDPs.

He said that though government had tried to cushion the effect of insurgency on IDPs, the effort could be faster than the current pace.

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