‘Lack of transparency’ | House of Rep condemn FG’s approach to IDP situation

The House of representatives, on Monday, lambasted the Federal Government for its effort at tackling the problem of Internally Displaced Persons in the North-East.

According to a document released by the House Committee on IDPs, Refugees & Federal Government Initiatives on North-East Region, the support services provided by the Federal Government weren’t reaching those for which it was intended for.

The document which was signed by the chairman of the committee, Sani Zoro, noted that there are no concurrent plans to tackle the growing number of IDPs moving into camps in the northeast.

It further said that the lack of transparency by the Presidential Initiative on North-East, had led to an increase of crisis in the region.

The document reads, “For inexplicable reasons, too, the Federal Government has failed to embrace best global policy practices that would have helped significantly in attracting the buy-in and commitment of genuine donor organisations and members of the humanitarian cluster.”

“Agencies charged with camp management have only proved their incompetence over the years while transparency in procurement procedures of the Presidential Initiative on North-East and the Victims Support Fund remain a ruse as they are observed in the breach.”

“The situation has been aggravated further by the refusal of the Federal Government to adopt and operationalise the well-articulated national policy on internally displaced persons, developed and updated over the years.”

“The policy’s objective, among others, is to facilitate effective and efficient coordination of humanitarian response among  government agencies, local and international non-governmental organisations as well as relevant organs of the United Nations. “

“Regrettably, these and other failures have, over the years, multiplied and led to the current ‘free-for-all’ situation, in which large scale pillaging of food and non-food relief items, high infant mortality rates, gender-based violence, high birth rates in camps and forests, squalor, malnourishment, and humanitarian profiteering by unconscionable people and groups, are the prevailing narrative from the North-East region.”

In other to save the situation, the House called on the President to appoint a “responsible, conversant and committed Commissioner and Chief Executive for the National Commission for Refugees.”

The appointed should be able to deliver “all mandates specified in the Geneva Convention and the Additional Protocol governing the treatment of refugees and internally displaced persons, other regional treaties and agreements to which Nigeria is a signatory.”

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