The United Nations has lamented the living conditions of the victims of the Boko Haram insurgency in the North-East.
The world body expressed shock that 30,110 IDPs in Damboa and Bama, Borno State, were being forced to sleep outside because of heavily congested camps.
However, the National Emergency Management Agency said a total of 45,000 people had been sleeping in the open in various camps in the state.
Speaking at the Humanitarian Stakeholders’ Forum organised by the National Emergency Management Agency in Maiduguri on Thursday, the UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Mr Edward Kallon, called for improvement in the services provided for internally displaced people in the region.
He said, “We need to have a better understanding of the gap in the services we are providing for the displaced persons in the camps, it seems we don’t have a better understanding of the gaps.
“We also need to provide services based on international best practices. We are not meeting the best standard, it requires we must work together to provide better services.”
Kallon added, “One thing that is very clear whatever we have done and what we are doing currently is way below international standard.”
He asked the meeting to as a matter of urgency brainstorm on how to relocate 89,000 IDPs, saying more than 28 hectares of land was needed for that.
The UN chief said he saw 20,110 IDPs sleeping outside because they had no shelters in Bama.
Kallon added, “When I was in Bama, I was shocked with what I saw. Damboa shows another ugly face with over 10,000 without shelters.
“Camps are overcongested, we are under so much pressure to improve on what we are doing, we should not be too proud that we have done extremely well, there is still a lot to be done. And I call on NEMA and SEMA that is the area we need to work with the international community to bridge the gap, I am seriously worried about the efficiency and effectiveness of what we are doing to address displacement in North-East, we should do better and we must do better.”
The Director-General of NEMA, Alhaji Mustapha Maihajja, who was represented by the Director of Planning and Strategy, Mr Kayode Fagbemi, lamented the challenges resulting from the arrival of more IDPs from some communities attacked by Boko Haram in Borno.
He said, “The North-East Zonal Coordinator just told us that about 45,000 (IDPs) are without shelters, and this is because of new arrivals, we are here to plan how to address these challenges as well as to provide non-food and food items that will bring succour to the people.”
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