Daji Sani in Yola writes that recently, Eroton Exploration and Production Company and the Nigeria National Petroleum Cooperation brought succor to those who were internally displaced by Insurgency as well as the farmers and herdsmen crisis in Adamawa State
The recently displaced persons, living at Chambaaji Village, last week Saturday burst into singing and dancing in their native language on receiving relief materials from Eroton Exploration and Production Company and the Nigeria National Petroleum Cooperation (NNPC).
While appreciating the group for bringing help to them, the community narrated their respective ordeals.
For Mrs Aisha Mohammed, who said they were displaced by the recent clashes between herdsmen and farmers in Demsa Local Government Areas and had to flee from the area to Chambaaji Village in Yola South LGA of Adamawa state for safety, it was an experience that left a sore taste in their mouths
“We trekked with our husbands and children from Damsa LGA to Chambaaji village which is about 15 km to 20 km with no food to eat because we were fleeing from the crisis to a safer ground,” she said
She revealed that the reason behind their singing and dancing was because since they arrived Chambaaji Village no help allegedly came from goverment and they have being eating from hand to mouth, adding that their children were forced out of school due to the crisis.
According to her, “we are happy and dancing because the relief materials brought to us is going to reduce our current hardships and sufferings. We have been starving because our livelihood have been destroyed as a result of the crisis.”
“Today my children will eat good meal they have not eaten for a very long time and they will also sleep on a mattress,” she added as she chanted, “God is mighty and answers prayers”.
Despite the intervention by the Federal Government, local and international donors, checks revealed that there are so many displaced persons in Numan , Demsa Lamurde, Girei LGAs who were victims of the rampaging herdsmen, who are presently starving and might be prone to diseases like cholera, Measles, malaria fever, Lassa Fever and other diseases due to the incoming rainy season if nothing is done very quickly.
Ahead of the distribution of relief materials at Chambaaji village,the delegation of Eroton, NNPC,Red Cross and the state government had paid a courtesy call on the paramount ruler of the Fombina dynasty and Lamido of Adamawa, Dr Barkido Aliyu Mustapha at his palace.
The paramount ruler while addressing the delegation, described the directive issued to major oil production companies operating in the country by the NNPC to assist distressed Nigerians, especially those affected by insurgency and herdsmen/farmers crisis as a step taken in the right direction.
Mustapha further explained that the magnitude of destruction caused by Boko Haram insurgents in the North-east is least to be desired.
He also appealed that drastic security measures must be taken with high sense of seriousness and urgency so as to help our beloved Nigerians who are suffering due to this security challenges across the nation.
Lamido who insisted that enough is enough, said security operatives should endeavor to curtail the rampaging use of small weapons by individuals, which are used to terrorise, kidnap and carry out other forms of criminality across the country.
The traditional ruler however thanked his visitors warmly saying that the gesture is part of human concern and affection to fellow human at a critical time of need, while urging other to emulate the good gesture.
Earlier in his remarks Leader of the team, Mr.Dele Alkhionbare, Head of Business Development Eroton said they were in the state to extend hands of friendship to the victims of the insurgency in their little way.
Alkhionbare said the essence of human lives is to help those in the condition of need on time adding that “a brother in need is a brother indeed.
“We must prove to our brothers that we are concerned in order for them not to feel neglected. The quantom of destruction l saw cannot be expressed on pages of the newspapers or in the radio and television. Somebody needs to visit the IDPs camps to see for themselves”.
He expressed concern over the condition of living of some displaced persons visited at Malkohi settlement camp in the state calling on governments and well to do Nigerians to come to their aid.
He also mentioned that the assistance brought will be distributed to displaced persons in Yola South ,Madagali Michika and Mubi LGA respectively.
Also receiving the delegation in his office, Adamawa State House of Assembly Speaker, Hon.Kabiru Mijinyawa said the innovative gesture must be commended by all and sundry considering the fasting period in which people are encouraged to help and forgive.
Mijinyawa expressed gratitude to the company and NNPC on behalf of the government and good people of the state for the show of love and togetherness.
While flagging of the distribution of relief materials at Chambaaji village of Yola South LGA, Aikhionbare said the idea was to carter to the need of the victims and give them hope again.
He said four local governments of Michika, Madagali, Yola South and Mubi will benefit from the first phase of the distribution, subsequently other local government areas affected will also benefit from the gesture.
The Chambaaji villagers mostly Fulanis who were recently affected by farmers/herder crisis around Sourthen Adamawa and relocated to the Nana Asmau Nomadic Primary School, Chambaaji, Yola South LGA were the first to be cartered for.
The villagers at Chambaaji received items which included, Maize, mattresses, bedcovers, buckets, per boiled rice, vegetable oil, millet, soaps, hygiene pad, mats, cooking pots, knife’s, sorghum, mosquito nets, tarpaulin and cloths.
These items came in several trailer loads to the Chambaaji village under the supervision of the Lamido Adamawa HRH Barkindo Aliyu Mustapha, who was represented by the District head of Yola South, Chikasoro Adamawa.
Aikhionbare said the company had compassion on the plight of internally Displaced Persons IDPs in the North-east and decided to go into a joint venture with NNPC to try and salvage the situation.
Aikhionbare pointed out that Eroton has been embarking on such similar projects to reduce hardships being faced by the people affected by diverse crisis around the country.
The Group Managing Director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Cooperation ( NNPC) Engr Maikanti Baru, who was represented by Ogbonnaya A. Kalu, thanked Eroton, NEMA and Red Cross for assisting in the distribution of the items.
He said NNPC was compassionate about the sufferings of IDPs in the North-east and had developed the joint venture to bring succor to the thousands of people displaced, especially women and children.
He called on all other stakeholders involved to contribute in elevating the harsh conditions of the IDPs by bringing items that would better their conditions.
Kalu revealed that Baru had given them a mandate to provide for the needy especially those affected by Insurgency and other forms of crises in Nigeria.
One of the beneficiaries at Chambaaji village expressed joy, saying that since they were displaced recently by herder/farmer crisis in Demsa LGA they have not received any help from anywhere.
She further explained that their living conditions was bad, just as she thanked Eroton and NNPC for coming to their rescue, adding that the gesture will go a long way to reduce their sufferings.
The respresentive of the Adamawa state governor, Senator Mohammed Jibrila Bindow, who doubled as the Executive of the Adamawa State Emergency Management Agency (ADSEMA), Dr Mahmood Suleiman, said the goverment welcomed the gesture.
He said the intervention was timely and will go a long way to alleviate the hardships and sufferings of the citizens especially the Internally Displaced Persons in the state .
Suleiman further explained that the state government will do everything humanly possible to support the idea of NNPC as it open its hands to receive those oil companies that are yet to bring their aid.