Governor of Borno State, Northeast Nigeria, Babagana Zulum, on Tuesday evening, March 8, embarked on an urgent trip to one of the resettled communities to share food and cash to a starving 240,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs), officials said.
The cash and food palliative was shared across 40,000 IDP households in Dikwa, a town 90 km from Maiduguri, the state capital.
It is customary practice for the officials of the government and the non-profit humanitarian organisations to share palliative to IDPs through households.
Isa Gusau, the Spokesman of Governor Zulum, informed in a statement shared with HumAngle that cash and food distribution were “part of the Zulum’s routine approvals of support to vulnerable persons, even as communities affected by attacks, are now engaging in agricultural activities and other businesses towards sustainable means of livelihood.”
HumAngle has reported how IDPs in camps and resettled communities lived in starvation due to lack of food and limited means of cultivating farmlands for self-sufficiency.
While food and cash distribution took place in Dikwa, IDPs in official camps in Gubio located within the state capital, Maiduguri, continue to suffer from hunger due to months of neglect by the government and humanitarian agencies.
Gusau said Governor Zulum had to embark on a late evening trip from Maiduguri to Dikwa, where he arrived at night ahead of the food distribution exercise.
On Wednesday morning, the governor was said to have supervised the “distribution of food and non-food items to a combined number of 40,000 households, with each household made up of at least six persons.”
According to the statement, “the beneficiaries comprised 24,000 women and 16,000 men, despite some of them being couples.
“Each of the 24,000 women received a wrapper and the sum of N5,000 cash, which combined the total of N120 million, while the 16,000 men received 25 kg of rice and 25 kg of maize.”
In Feb. 2021, Zulum shared food and nearly the same amount of aid to IDPs in Dikwa town.
Zulum had in October 2021, banned humanitarian organisations from taking all kinds of relief support to IDPs within Maiduguri as his government embarked on the closure of such camps and returning of the inmates to their reclaimed communities.
Recent reports by HumAngle have shown that without this kind of periodic intervention, IDPs who have limited access to basic means of livelihood find it difficult to survive in resettled communities. A large number of the returned IDPs have recently found their ways back to Maiduguri.
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