Posted by Sade Williams
The Deputy Governor of Yobe State, Engineer Abubakar Aliyu, has said a lot still needs to be done in the areas of rehabilitation, reconstruction, resettlement and reintegration of thousands of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Yobe and other northeastern states that were ravaged by the activities of the Boko Haram in the region.
Aliyu, who spoke in Yobe at the weekend while commending the kind gesture of the management and staff of Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) which donated scholastic materials to Mainstreamed Learners and Parents Caregivers; starter packs for small scale businesses as well as food items for the affected families in the host communities worth millions of naira, also called on other organisations to come to the aide of Yobe and other sister states in the northeast.
He said AMCON’s intervention to IDPs in Yobe came at the time the government of Yobe State under the able leadership of the state governor, His Excellency, Alhaji (Dr.) Ibrahim Gaidam is also doing everything possible to bring an end to the sufferings of the displaced persons in the state.
Aliyu said Yobe State remains perhaps, the most coordinated of all the affected states when it comes to dealing with the challenges of IDPs in the country because the government set up a very powerful committee chaired by his humble self to coordinate every activity that has to do with IDPs in Yobe.
For effective coordination and smooth handling of all issues, Engineer Aliyu said the committee, which is further broken down into four sub-committees are responsible for all donations, aides, grants amongst others that arrive the state for onward distribution to the beneficiaries.
He said, “On behalf of the government and people of Yobe State, I welcome you to our state and thank you for the items you have donated to the IDPs in Yobe State. I want to let you know that in Yobe, we are very methodological in handling the issues of IDPs. That was why the governor set up what you can call a one-stop-shop that handles anything IDP in the state because we are dealing with over 300,000 IDPs and 14,000 households that the state government allocated lands for the reconstruction of their houses. The figure is huge and so we need interventions like what you have done because the government alone cannot solve all the problems.
“As we speak, through the hard work and commitment of the state government, we have completed the rebuilding of most of the schools and hospitals. What we encourage donors like AMCON to do is to contact the committee so that we can guide you to channel your donations to areas that are critical. We need AMCON to key into our reconstruction plan for the IDPs, which we have already segmented for easy evaluation. We hope this is not the end of your intervention or assistance to us. I thank you for what you have brought to our IDPs and we believe it would go a long way.”
Earlier in his address, Mr. Hassan Tanko, who represented the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, AMCON, Mr. Ahmed Kuru in Yobe told the Deputy Governor that AMCON was moved to assist because of the untold hardship the IDPs were going through due to no fault of theirs.
He said, “Your Excellency, what you are witnessing here today is a clear demonstration of our support to the government and good people of Yobe State. We are concerned by the sufferings of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) especially the children and indeed the families that were traumatized and distabilised by insurgence in the northeast, where violent attacks by extremists forced more than 2.2 million people to flee their homes including over one million children who are presently out of school.”
Tanko said AMCON designed the IDP intervention programme for three northeastern states that were worst hit by insurgence. He told the Deputy Governor that the programme was flagged-off in Yola Adamawa State on November 2, where 3000 individuals across seven local government areas of the state benefitted from the relief materials. In Yobe, he stated that the items were meant to go round five local government areas.
“For us as AMCON, everything that needs to be done must be done to provide succor to these children that are forced out of school. We must all join hands to secure their future though education because that is the best gift you can give a child to secure his or her future. There is also need to support their families. We thank the government and people of Yobe State for accommodating and assisting the IDPs to settle down, we also want to commend the management of USAID-Education Crisis Response (ECR) led by Mr. Ayo Oladini, whom the Management of AMCON selected among all the non-governmental organisations working in the northeast to assist AMCON in the distribution of these relief materials. We thank Almighty God for the peace that is gradually returning in the northeast and pray that as a people, we would not face this sort of crisis again”, Tanko added.