Home News FG initiates emergency intervention as Plateau, Benue, Niger IDPs reach 548,751

FG initiates emergency intervention as Plateau, Benue, Niger IDPs reach 548,751

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The estimated number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Benue, Niger and Plateau States in 2023 alone has risen to about 548,751, figures collated on Sunday from various local and international organisations showed.

It was also gathered, on Sunday, that the Federal Government, through its National Emergency Management Agency, has commenced the distribution of relief items under the Special National Economic Livelihood Emergency Intervention.

Although the security situation in Nigeria has improved in parts of the country with the scale of attacks trending down, millions of Nigerians are still being displaced from their communities by criminal gangs, bandits and others.

In 2022, the International Organisation for Migration said over 3.6 million people were displaced in Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe States. This year, thousands have been displaced by gunmen in Benue, Niger, and Plateau.

As of July 2023, there are an estimated 18,751 internally displaced persons in Plateau State, according to a report by the Gideon and Funmi Para-Mallam Peace Foundation, which was released on 14 July 2023.

The report found that the IDPs were from eight local government areas of Plateau State.

The report also found that 346 people have been killed in these attacks since 17th April 2023.

The violence in Plateau State is a result of the long-standing conflict between herders and farmers. The violence in Plateau State has had a devastating impact on the lives of the IDPs. Many of the IDPs have lost their homes, their livelihoods, and their loved ones. They are now living in camps in overcrowded and unsanitary conditions. They also lack access to basic necessities, such as food, water, and healthcare.

Similarly, as of last month, an estimated 230,000 IDPs were in various camps in Benue State, Nigeria. This number is based on a report by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, which was released on 20 July 2023.

The report found that the IDPs were from 16 Local Government Areas (LGAs) in Benue State.

The report also found that 1,300 people had been killed in these attacks since 1st January 2023.

According to the report, the violence in Benue was also a result of the long-standing conflict between herders and farmers. The majority of the IDPs are women and children and from various ethnic groups, including Tiv, Idoma, and Igede.

It was further gathered that as of July 2023, the estimated number of IDPs in Niger State was 300,000, according to the report by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, released on 20th July 2023.

The report found that the IDPs were from 12 LGAs in Niger State, including Shiroro, Munya, Rafi, Mariga, Kontagora, and Lapai. The report also found that 1,500 people had been killed in violent attacks in the state since 1st January 2023.

The violence in Niger, according to findings by the UN body, was a result of the activities of armed groups, including bandits and Boko Haram. It described bandits as criminals who operate in the forests of Niger State. They attack villages and steal livestock and other valuables, while Boko Haram is a terrorist group that is waging war against the government.

When contacted to speak on what the government was doing to ameliorate the plights of IDPs, among others, spokesperson for the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Ezekiel Manzo outlined some of the interventions being done by NEMA.

He revealed that the government commenced an emergency intervention programme in three states on Thursday, adding that the initiative would be expanded and implemented in all 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory.

“The interventions are many, for instance, NEMA has commenced the distribution of relief items under a Special National Economic Livelihood Emergency Intervention approved by the Federal Government for households affected by the 2022 flood.

“The distribution has commenced in Taraba, Bauchi and Gombe states and will cover the 36 states and the FCT for beneficiaries in communities affected by the 2022 flood across the country.

“NEMA had recently conducted verification of the target beneficiaries in collaboration with the various State Emergency Management Agencies”, Manzo stated.

On relief materials being distributed by the agency, he said: “They include food and non-food items, livelihood support tools; and seedlings will be directly distributed to the beneficiaries to enhance their socio-economic resilience”.

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