Borno IDPs Decry Poor Living Condition In Camp

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Some Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) at the Dalori Camp II along Bama road, Maiduguri, Borno, have called for improved living conditions in the camp.

The IDPs made the appeal while speaking to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday during a visit to the camp by the UNHRC.

According to them, some of the challenges they face included inconsistent and poor feeding, poor sanitary conditions, lack of proper medical attention, deplorable sanitary condition and poor security.

The IDPs said although the government was trying, they needed improved welfare, urging the government and NGOs to take their welfare as a priority because they are Nigerian citizens who are just victims of circumstance.

Malam Abatcha Ali, the Men’s Leader of the camp, said in spite of the best efforts of government, displaced persons continue to suffer hunger and other deprivations in the camps.

“Our major problem after food is where to sleep as there are inadequate bed spaces in the camps.

“Because of the poor sanitary condition, we are also exposed to mosquitoes, especially women and children, and we also have inadequate mosquito nets.

“Even when few mosquito nets are provided, there are no places to tie them because we sleep on the floor,” he said.

Ali also complained of lack of drugs at the camp’s clinics, disclosing that the only drug they get was paracetamol.

“No matter the complaints, all you get is paracetamol and when we go to hospitals in the town, they ask for money, which we don’t have,” he explained.

On her part, Mrs Hussina Usman, the Women’s Leader of the camp, said sometimes they eat their first meal of the day around 6 p.m. and even so the food is hardly enough.

“Those small sized buckets you see there are used in serving food and 12 people share a half full bucket.

“We eat once a day and it is always rice, sometimes mixed with beans, like today, we haven’t eaten because there’s nothing to cook,” she said.

Usman said it is very challenging to prepare food in the camp because it is difficult to have everything required in place at the same time.

She explained that it is either there is no firewood or there is no water and when one is available, the other will be missing which is why there is always delay in preparing the food.

According to her, the only source of protein available to them is beans, which is usually in small quantity.

Fish and meat, she said, were luxuries they could only dream of.

Mr Haliru Yusuf, a youth in the camp, appreciated government for its success in the war against insurgency but said a lot still has to be done in increasing the security in the camps.

Yusuf explained that cases of suicide bombers attacking camps poses great fear and insecurity to them as they can hardly tell what would happen to them next.

“Recently, there was an attack in Dikwa Camp and so many of our brothers and sisters were killed.

“If there was tight security, that would not have happened,” Yusuf said.

He said that what is most important is for the government to totally defeat the insurgents so that the whole nightmare would be over and they can return to their homes and live in peace.

NAN also gathered that more than 51 per cent of the IDPs in the Dalori Camp II comprises of women who are either pregnant or nursing mothers since its establishment.

The camp was established by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the State Government to accommodate IDPs and resettle returnees from Cameroun, Niger and Chad. (NAN)

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