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Government to stop distribution of relief materials to IDPs

Distribution of relief materials at an IDP camp

Emmanuel Akosile

The Federal Government of Nigeria may have concluded plans to discontinue free distribution of relief materials to estimated 2.4million Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in rehabilitation camps across the country by 2020.

A report indicates Senator Basheer Mohammed, Commissioner, National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI), gave the hints Monday, December 30, 2019, after meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja.

According to him, from first quarter of 2020, state governments will assist the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development in reintegrating the IDPs to their original settlements.

Senator Mohammed said the strategy for the reintegration of the IDPs, going forward, would be to provide care, maintenance and durable solutions to the needs of the displaced, most of whom were forced out of their original communities by insurgency.

Mohammed said, “The Commission has deemed it necessary to move from the provision of relief items to care, maintenance and durable solutions that will reintegrate our persons of concern (POCs) into normal lives where they can thrive.

“We currently have 2.4million IDPs in camps and host communities across the country.  Though stability has been restored in many areas that generated the IDPs, the persons of concern are unable to return home for lack of durable solutions to ensure their smooth reintegration.

According to him, in 2020, his first point of action will be to work with state governors to return and reintegrate IDPs to their communities.

“It is time that they begin to live normal life and feel the pulse of a growing Nigeria.

“Recognising the need for education at every level and the special needs of IDPs, the National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons will build educational learning centres in all IDP camps,” Mohammed stated.

He stresses that this measure will encourage learning in children unable to attend regular schools and those with special needs due to the trauma of displacement.

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