Following Upsurge in Violence, IOM Scales Up Efforts to Assist Newly Displaced in Nigeria

Posted: 
01/25/19
Themes: 
Humanitarian Emergencies, Internally Displaced Persons

This Press Note has been updated on 31/01/2019 - 17:25 GMT +1

Maiduguri – A recent upsurge in violence in Borno State, north-east Nigeria has caused the mass displacement of 56,770 individuals between 1 December 2018 and 28 January 2019, according to new data prepared by the International Organization for Migration, which is responding with aid distribution and guidance to government partners in helping Nigerians meet this challenge.

Recent attacks on Rann, a town near the border with Cameroon on 14 and 27 January have also prompted population movements, however, the exact number of people displaced remains unknown.

Attacks in the Borno towns of Baga and attempted attacks in Monguno by non-state armed groups on 26 and 28 December 2018 prompted population movements into already congested camps in Maiduguri, the state capital. Others fled to camps in Monguno, itself, as well as to the Konduga and Jere local government areas (LGAs) in December.

The humanitarian crisis in north-east Nigeria has caused the displacement of 1.8 million people, almost 80 per cent of whom are concentrated in Borno state.

“I fled from my hometown because I was afraid there would be an attack. I walked to Monguno and then boarded a truck that took me to Gubio camp (Maiduguri) with my children,” said Hauwa, 50-year old woman from Doro town in Baga. “Here I feel safe, but I am sleeping outside and with little food.”

These population movements highlight the need for additional land in areas like Monguno, to de-congest camps – either by opening new ones or expanding existing ones.

In Maiduguri, Monguno, Konduga and Jere local government areas (LGAs), IOM is organizing focus group discussions with IDPs and host community members to gauge sentiment to a proposed relocation from Teachers Village camp to a newly identified vacant stadium in the city.

The Organization is supporting the State Management Agency (SEMA) in strengthening camp management and camp coordination in various displacement sites in Maiduguri. IOM has information booths to offer referrals on available services to IDPs, receive feedback and complaints. 

“Together with our humanitarian partners, we are providing assistance to new arrivals, but our current resources are not sufficient to meet the emerging needs,” said Dave Bercasio, IOM Nigeria’s Emergency Coordinator. 

Since late December, IOM has distributed 957 emergency shelter kits to support 4,306 new arrivals in Maiduguri’s Bakasi camp (300 kits); Gubio camp (300 kits); and Teachers Village camp (357 kits). The kits consist of timbers, tarpaulin, ropes, and other shelter construction tools. More than 1,718 non-food item (NFI) kits have been distributed to 6,930 new arrivals in Teachers Village camp (1,293 kits); Gubio camp (400 kits); and Mogcolis camp (25 kits). Upon the opening of the planned new camp in Mohammed Goni International stadium in Maiduguri, IOM will distribute 400 NFI kits to 400 families. At the stadium camp, IOM has begun the construction of 400 shelters.

In addition, IOM is currently building five communal shelters at the reception centre in Monguno, and will be assisting 475 households in Monguno with emergency shelter kits. These interventions are funded by EU humanitarian aid.

Mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) teams are providing psychological first aid, informal education, psychoeducation for caregivers, support group interventions, recreational activities for children, and sensitization on counter-trafficking and gender-based violence (GBV). These psychosocial activities have reached 11,891 new arrivals in eight camps. 

Throughout Borno State, IOM’s Emergency Tracking Tool team continues to monitor rates of displacement, conduct registration of IDPs in immediate need of humanitarian assistance and provide data to partners. IOM is committed to scaling up its response in order to meet escalating needs.

Humanitarian agencies in north-east Nigeria are faced with an increasingly complex operational environment. Operating under these complex circumstances, IOM continues to provide lifesaving shelter, WASH, NFI, CCCM, livelihood, capacity building and MHPSS assistance to affected communities, as well as DMS/CCCM, Shelter and NFI sector coordination. 

For more information please contact Jorge Galindo at IOM Nigeria, Tel: +234 906 273 9168, Email: jgalindo@iom.int 

  • IOM distributes relief items to internally displaced persons in Ngala town, Borno State. Photo: IOM