10 January 2018

Nigeria: Benue Killings - 80,000 Internally Displaced Persons Registered

Photo: Daily Trust
Herdsmen.

The Benue State Emergency Management Agency, SEMA, says it has registered about 80,000 Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, across four camps located in Guma and Logo local government areas of the state.

Guma and Logo were the local governments affected by the recent murder of about 50 people by suspected herdsmen.

The killings have been condemned by Nigerians including President Muhammadu Buhari who ordered the Inspector General of Police to move to the state to quell the violence there. Mr. Idris arrived Benue on Wednesday.

The Executive Secretary of SEMA, Emmanuel Shior, made the disclosure in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Makurdi on Wednesday.

Mr. Shior said that the agency arrived at the figure during its manual registration of the IDPs in the two local government areas.

He said the IDPs were at the government approved camps at Daudu, Tse-Ginde, Gbajimba all in Guma and Ugba in Logo local councils.

"At the moment, what we have done is the manual registration of the displaced persons, not the biometrics; and we have registered about 80,000 IDPs across the four camps in the state.

"We are likely to open more camps depending on the situation because we have started receiving IDPs from Nasarawa State who were displaced also as a result of the same invaders.

"But Governor Samuel Ortom has already mobilised the agency to take both food and non-food materials to the camps and we are doing same," he said.

The executive secretary admitted that the agency was overwhelmed with the level of humanitarian services, adding that it would do its best to ensure that the IDPs did not live below the set standard.

In a related development, the executive secretary held an emergency stakeholders meeting with relevant humanitarian organisations, civil societies, security operatives and NGOs over the humanitarian crisis in the state.

During the meeting, the stakeholders agreed to mobilise immediately to the camps in groups to meet the needs of the IDPs.

Mr. Shior told the stakeholders that the agency's ad-hoc staff were already at the camps, adding that government had made provisions for all the necessary facilities needed across the camps bearing in mind the urgency of the situation.

He also told them that the agency had prepared a three-week plan for the IDPs, adding that all humanitarian staff working on the field would be given accreditation by the agency for effective coordination and documentation.

NAN reports that representatives from the Immigration Service, Red Cross, Civil Societies, NGOs, Ministries of Education, Health, Planning Commission and other humanitarian groups were in attendance.

(NAN)

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