UN to partner Borno, NEDC In refugees, IDPs resettlement

By SADIQ ABUBAKAR, Maiduguri –

 

The United Nations (UN) has promised to partner with the Borno State government and North East Development Commission, NEDC in safety resettlement of IDPs and refugees in the state and region.

 

The Assistant Secretary General of the UN, Mr. Robert Piper, who is also the Special Adviser to the UN Secretary General on IDPs and Refugees stated this on Monday when he paid courtesy call on Governor Babagana Zulum at the Government House Maiduguri.

 

He further disclosed UN readiness for more partnership when he led the UN delegation on a courtesy visit to the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the NEDC, Mohammed Alkali, at the NEDC Headquarters n Maiduguri.

 

Piper said that the essence of the visit is for the UN to learn how the state and the NEDC have handled the humanitarian crisis and see how it can support the Governor Zulum, who has shown commitment to ensure that the citizens displaced mostly in 2011 by insurgency are resettled and reintegrated to their communities.

 

Also speaking at the NEDC Headquarters, the UN Envoy said UN is willing to address the challenges of the over 2.4 million victims or people displaced by the Boko Haram insurgency , in the North-East region especially, the most affected states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe.

He further noted that the displacement requires investments in infrastructural, educational and health facilities that are not functioning.

“It is a long term development enterprise, not a short term emergency work. To me, NEDC is one of the instruments that holds the key. I believe you are a long term investor after seeing your portfolio and plans, they are long term structural business.

“When we think of the 2.2 million persons displaced in the North-East out of which, 1.6 are from Borno State, we acknowledge that a lot of people are affected. They need to be on the move, they need to be reintegrated and join communities. We don’t invest exclusively in each family, but we lift the communities and neighbourhoods up.

“So the investment benefit is not just to the 2.2 million displaced persons, but to the communities where they live,” Piper said.

In his remark, the MD/ CEO of NEDC, Alhaji Mohammed Goni Alkali appreciated the UN Assistant Secretary and expressed his delight with the earlier meeting with the UN Envoy and Governor Zulum.

He commended the UN for their numerous supports for the IDPs in Nigeria especially, north east and Borno state in particular.

Alkali said that the visit of the UN delegation is not only about discussion on how the issues of the IDPs could be handled, but how to have sustainable approach with each other, adding that the commission has already developed a master plan for the North-East region.

The NEDC MD said, “The United Nations Development Programme, UNDP, has supported us in providing technical support in drafting the master plan. The first phase is recovery and stabilisation of the victims of the crisis. We also, among others, have what we call the renewal phase, which focuses on resettled renewal.”

 

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