Over 180, 000 displaced persons were currently in need of shelter in Borno -NRC
The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) has called on humanitarian organisations to scale up activities to improve the living conditions of persons displaced by insurgency and avert outbreak of diseases in the northeast.
NRC’s Media Adviser, Catriona Loughran, in a statement issued on Tuesday in Maiduguri, said that living conditions of the displaced persons continued to deteriorate due to inadequate and overcrowded facilities at Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps in the region.
Loughran quoted the NRC’s Country Director, Eric Batonon, as saying that many of the over two million persons displaced by the insurgency, lacked shelter.
“Every week, people continue to flee violence and insecurity in the northeast Nigeria. Many settle along roadside, or on empty strips of land, devoid of proper sanitation and water points”.
“Hundreds of thousands of people are living in overcrowded displacement sites far below international minimum standards, and without proper access to latrines and clean water”.
“Some put up shelters made of wooden sticks and pieces of ripped fabric; these improvised shelters provide no protection against wind and rain, offer almost no privacy and security”.
“Many of them do not have even a door, leaving women, men and children highly vulnerable to intrusions and attacks,” Batonon said in the statement.
Batonon disclosed that more than 180, 000 displaced persons were currently in need of shelter in Borno, adding that most of them slept in the open and deplorable makeshift homes.
He noted that as the rainy season got underway, fears over outbreak of cholera, was looming.
According to him, over 10, 000 cholera cases were confirmed and 175 deaths recorded in the region in 2018.
“People in Nigeria need safe pathways back to their homes and much better living conditions in the meantime”.
“Displacement sites are dangerous, chaotic and entirely unsuitable for children. It is critical to de-congest these overcrowded sites, provide people that have been forced to flee with safe and dignified facilities to prevent another deadly cholera outbreak,” he added.
Batonon called on donor countries to increase their financial support for relief to families trying to survive the humanitarian crisis caused by the 10-year long insurgency.
He stressed that the global humanitarian community, national and authorities need to do more to improve the lives of the displaced persons.
“The world needs to scale up the relief work and send a message of hope to the more than seven million people in need of humanitarian assistance in northeast; after a decade of conflict, we need to show them that they have not been forgotten, ” he said. (NAN)