By Michael Olugbode
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Mrs. Sadiya Umar-Farouq has said the federal government would commence the use of aircraft to distribute relief materials to dangerous and inaccessible areas in Borno State.
Umar-Farouq, who was in Maiduguri at the weekend to deliver relief materials to the state, told the Borno State Governor, Prof. Babagana Zulum, who was represented by the Borno State Deputy Governor, Mr. Umar Kadafur, that “the process of coherently addressing vulnerability of affected communities requires that we adopt a ‘humanitarian-development- peace nexus’ approach within all our structures, systems, processes, and policy environment.”
“Humanitarian action, social inclusion and protection policies and programmes, as well as, peace building structures must not be implemented as silo or serial processes. They are all required to occur in a concurrent and cohesive manner to ensure economic and social stability.”
“The National Humanitarian Coordination Committee (NHCC) and my ministry will work closely with the Borno State Government and other humanitarian stakeholders with the objective of alleviating and limiting the vulnerability of affected populations in Borno State and the rest of Nigeria.”
Umar-Farouq said that the federal government has noted that the Internally Displaced Persons might require further support in terms of basic necessities like food due to the recent restriction of movement to curtail the spread of COVID-19 pandemic disease and inaccessibility of some communities as a result of floods and insecurity.
She said that in a bid to meet the needs of the vulnerable people in state, the federal government has brought 26,067 bags of 12.5kilogram of parboiled rice; 26,067 bags of 25kilogram of beans; 26,067 bags of 12.5kilogram of maize/millet; 1,304 bags of 20kilogram of iodised salt; 2,607 units of 20 liters kegs of vegetable oil; 4,345 cartons of seasoning cubes and 2,173 tin tomato cartons in 24/48 (Tin/Carton).
She noted that the food items would cater for 26,067 households with a total population of 156,402.
The minister said: “However, to ensure that we are able to provide adequate support, I wish to request that the State Government provide the necessary information required to enable collaboration with the Nigerian Air Force to drop food and non-food items in locations that have been made inaccessible due to insecurity or the recent floods.”
She added that the Managing Director of North East Development Commission and the Director General of the National Emergency Management Agency would work with the state government to provide the NHCC with the required information that would ensure that the interventions are sufficient for the identified vulnerable communities.
The minister had earlier visited Bauchi to deliver where food items that could cater for 70,867 households as palliative for COVID-19.