Michael Olugbode in Maiduguri

The National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI) on Thursday flagged off the distribution of care, maintenance and empowerment materials to victims of Boko Haram insurgency in Borno State.

The items to be distributed by the NCFRMI include 1,000 grinding machines, 1,500 sewing machines and 1,000 irrigation water pump, among others worth several millions of naira.

Distributing the items at a flag off ceremony in Gwoza, Borno State, the Federal Commissioner of the NCFRMI, Hajiya Saida Umar Farouk, said: “We have come once again to empathize with our brothers and sisters who were displaced in Bama, Banki, Pulka (Gwoza) and some part of Maiduguri township and to also deliver care, maintenance and empowerment materials in an effort to complement the state government’s role towards rehabilitation of the displaced persons.

“The NCFRMI is key to recognize the consistent efforts of the federal government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari in addressing insurgency in the North-east and other parts of the country. To this end, the commission has taken into cognizance its humanitarian mandate of providing protection, assistance and ensuring that durable solution are always provided for the displaced communities.

“We are here therefore, to ensure that empowerment materials such as skill acquisition pack, barbing/tailoring tools, agricultural tools, educational tools, healthcare materials, food items, etc are distributed to those victims of displacement so as to enable them begin a new life once more.”

Also speaking at the same event, which also doubled as the flag off of the reconstruction of public buildings in Gwoza, Mobbar and Ngala Local Government Areas of Borno State, the Executive Director of VSF, Prof. Sunday Ochoche, said six projects which are estimated at N1.6 billion are fully funded by VSF and will be executed by the Borno State Ministry of Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Resettlement.

He said the project budget of N1.6 billion would cover building materials and labour costs for the construction of schools, hospitals, hostels, staff quarters and the local government secretariats of Gwoza, Mobbar and Ngala.

The Vice-Chairman of VSF, Gen. Theophilus Danjuma (rtd), who was represented at the flag off by the Fund’s Vice-Chairman, Tijjani Tumsah, reiterated the commitment of VSF to supporting victims in the recovery from the devastations of the Boko Haram insurgency.

He said he was optimistic that the reconstruction project in the three Borno councils will help to further restore institutions of governance while restoring normalcy to the people.

He added: “By the completion of this project, VSF would have carried out reconstruction in nine local government areas in Borno State.”

The local governments where the reconstruction is ongoing include Dikwa, Bama, Chibok, Damboa, Askira Uba, Hawul, Gwoza, Mobbar and Ngala.