Armed ViolenceNews

Number Of Victims Of Ngala Abduction Still Unknown – Borno State Government

Addressing diplomats, development partners, and humanitarian leaders as part of a meeting with ‘Northeast Ambassadors,’ Governor Zulum urged caution regarding the circulating figures of the abductees, saying there was no official tally yet.

The Governor of Borno State, North East Nigeria, Babagana Zulum, has spoken out regarding the alleged mass abduction of internally displaced persons (IDPs), primarily women and girls, by terrorists.

Reports had surfaced early in the week, claiming that nearly 319 women had been taken by terrorists believed to be associated with Boko Haram around Ngala in Gamboru Local government area as they went in search of firewood on Tuesday. These claims have since provoked a national outcry and elicited a condemnatory response from the United Nations.

The UN Resident Humanitarian Coordinator, Mohammed Malick Fall, said in the statement that some of the abductees have been released, but the fate of many remains unknown. The UN called for the immediate release of the captives and urged all parties to protect civilians, in line with international humanitarian laws.

Addressing diplomats, development partners, and humanitarian leaders as part of a meeting with ‘Northeast Ambassadors,’ Governor Zulum urged caution regarding the circulating figures of the abductees, stating, 

“We must be careful with the numbers being quoted, as we do not have an official tally at this moment,” Zulum told the Northeast Ambassador, a group chaired by the British High Commissioner, Richard Montgomery. 

The governor provided insights into the context surrounding the alleged abductions in Ngala. “Based on the intelligence we have received so far, there seems to be more to the Ngala abduction than meets the eye,” he said. 

During a recent visit to Mafa, his local government area, Governor Zulum encountered a significant number of women who expressed a strong desire to leave IDP camps. “We must tread carefully,” he said. “Among those reported to be abducted are women who chose to leave the camp for the bush.”

Highlighting the challenges faced by those in the Ngala IDP camp, Governor Zulum noted, “Ngala is one of the worst IDP camps in Borno, with over 70,000 household heads receiving minimal food assistance. We must facilitate their access to livelihoods; otherwise, there is a risk they will return to Boko Haram.”

He also referenced what he described as the state’s success in reintegrating repentant militants. “In the last two years, we have received over 162,000 repentant terrorists,” he declared. “This is a significant achievement, never recorded anywhere in the world, and it’s because we have built a bridge of trust between the government and those willing to lay down their arms.”

There have been reasons to criticise the reintegration efforts, however, especially in the disparity between the treatment of the surrendered terrorists and displaced persons. HumAngle found last year that the leftovers of some of the terrorists, turned into animal feed, were finding their way to the stomachs of internally displaced persons desperate for food.

Speaking on resettlement efforts, “We are at a crossroads,” the governor admitted. 

“We must decide whether to close the camps and resettle our people in their ancestral homes with dignity and means of livelihood or risk them returning to the bush.”

Support Our Journalism

There are millions of ordinary people affected by conflict in Africa whose stories are missing in the mainstream media. HumAngle is determined to tell those challenging and under-reported stories, hoping that the people impacted by these conflicts will find the safety and security they deserve.

To ensure that we continue to provide public service coverage, we have a small favour to ask you. We want you to be part of our journalistic endeavour by contributing a token to us.

Your donation will further promote a robust, free, and independent media.

Donate Here

Of course, we want our exclusive stories to reach as many people as possible and would appreciate it if you republish them. We only ask that you properly attribute to HumAngle, generally including the author's name, a link to the publication and a line of acknowledgement. Contact us for enquiries or requests.

Contact Us

Abdulkareem Haruna

Abdulkareem Haruna is a Nigerian journalist currently employed as the Editor for Lake Chad at HumAngle. For over a decade, he has demonstrated a passionate commitment to reporting on the Boko Haram conflict and the crisis in the Lake Chad region of northeastern Nigeria. He is a graduate of English Language and holds a Diploma in Mass Communications. Prior to his current role, he served as an assistant editor at both Premium Times and Leadership Newspaper.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Translate »