Nigeria DART transitions, permanent field staff continue to support continuing humanitarian response
Recent AOG attacks in northeastern Nigeria heighten security concerns for aid workers and civilians
Staff assess conditions, monitor programs during USAID/OFDA site visit to Chad
On October 5, the USAID Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) in Nigeria transitioned to a structure comprising permanent USAID/OFDA and USAID/FFP staff based in the capital city of Abuja. The Abuja-based staff continue to coordinate ongoing emergency assistance programming with regional teams in Dakar, Senegal, and Washington, D.C and are working closely with U.S. Government (USG) and external partners to address critical humanitarian needs.
The humanitarian operating environment in northeastern Nigeria remains precarious, with at least two recent incidents of armed opposition groups (AOGs) executing aid workers, according to media reports. On October 15, international media reported the execution of a second International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) aid worker, following the first such execution on September 17. On October 14, ICRC issued an urgent appeal to the Government of Nigeria (GoN) and other stakeholders to secure the release of a third ICRC worker and a 15-year old student held by AOG operatives; they had not been released as of November 9.
During early October planning discussions regarding the 2019–2021 Nigeria Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP), the UN estimated that 7.1 million people will require humanitarian assistance across Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe states in 2019—an 8 percent decrease from 7.7 million people in 2018. The UN projected targeting a population of 6.2 million individuals for assistance in 2019, a slight increase from 2018, as it pilots a multi-year HRP in Nigeria to better align humanitarian and development planning and encourage extended and flexible funding. Working towards longer-term strategic objectives, relief agencies plan to update humanitarian needs, financial requirements, and assistance targets annually.