The movement of thousands of internally displaced people who fled violent clashes in Kukawa and Monguno LGAs of Borno State at end 2018 continued in January 2019. An estimated 30,000 people, the majority of them from Baga town near the shores of Lake Chad, fled their homes by foot and by vehicle, without shelter or food, to converge on internally displaced camps in greater Maiduguri (MMC, Jere, and Konduga LGAs), mainly to Teachers Village, Bakasi, Gubio, Mogcolis and Dolori IDP camps. Thousands more fled to Monguno and other unconfirmed locations. Women and children make up 87 per cent of the newly displaced population.
Teachers Village alone received an estimated 20,000 new arrivals from the end of December through January, bringing the total camp population to more than 30,000 individuals in a location originally set up for 10,000 people maximum. This mass influx of people and resulting overpopulation of the camp significantly overstretched the existing resources in Teachers Village, especially in terms of shelter, leaving thousands of people sleeping outside in the open and living in extremely overcrowded and deplorable conditions.
To decongest Teachers Village, the United Nations and humanitarian partners identified an alternative site to set up a new IDP camp at Mohammed Goni International Stadium in Maiduguri. The new site was subsequently supported by the Borno State Government. Site planning and development started over the course of January with the aim to build enough shelters to accommodate and relocate approximately 2,580 households (14,200 individuals) from Teachers Village. However, Teachers Village and many other camps across Borno State will still faces challenges of congestion, even once the new Stadium Camp is operational. Therefore, the humanitarian community continues to advocate for additional land to develop targeted, safe, area-specific decongestion plans in coordination with all actors, including traditional leaders and humanitarians.
While January saw a reduction in the number of recorded security incidents, continued widespread insecurity and hostilities observed through November and December, especially in Borno State, continue to have serious consequences on humanitarian operations and the civilian population. Humanitarian partners have been unable to return to Baga, Kukawa, Cross Kauwa and Kekeno towns in Kukawa LGA, for example.
Furthermore, Rann town in Kala/Balge LGA, just 8 kilometres from the border with Cameroon, suffered from a series of clashes between non-state armed groups and the Nigerian military throughout the month of January, forcing tens of thousands of civilians to flee into neighbouring Cameroon and prompting the immediate relocation of humanitarian personnel from the area. Humanitarian assets were reportedly destroyed in one of the attacks, including property and assistance meant for people in need.
The humanitarian community is engaging on a regular basis with the Nigerian Armed Forces to de-conflict movements and humanitarian activities to ensure life-saving humanitarian aid can be delivered in a safe manner. The United Nations urges parties to the conflict to enable the work of humanitarian workers, facilitate their access to people in need, respect the neutrality of humanitarian actors, and afford them protection in line with International Humanitarian Law.
The United Nations and humanitarian partners, in support of the Government of Nigeria, launched the 2019-2021 Humanitarian Response Strategy on 29 January 2019 in Abuja. It is the first multi-year approach of its kind to be implemented in Nigeria, and includes a response plan for 2019 that aims to alleviate the suffering of 6.2 million people in dire need of lifesaving aid in the BAY states.
In 2019, the United Nations and partners are appealing for $848 million for 183 projects to be implemented by 69 humanitarian organisations. It is the fifth largest single-country appeal globally. As of 31 January 2019, $10.8 million (1.3 per cent) of the funds have been received, according to the Financial Tracking Service (FTS).
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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