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Borno: IDPs protest food shortage, demand to return home

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Dozens of internally displaced Persons (IDPs) in Borno State have protested delay in the distributions of foods to them by relief agencies.

The IDPs from Gubio camp who besieged the Maiduguri-Gubio road midday yesterday complained that they have not received food distributions for nearly two months.

“We are hungry as government has not given us foods. We would prefer to go back to our communities and be killed by Boko Haram than for us to die of hunger,” Usman Bukar said.

Other protesters claimed they have not eaten for days as they do not have the resources to buy foodstuffs outside the camp.

The protesting IDPs barricaded the Maiduguri-Gubio highway as they matched towards the Maimalari Army Cantonment.

Executive Chairperson, State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Yabawa Kolo regretted the situation. She said the agency, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), World Food Programme (WFP) and other partners have been collaborating to address the food needs of the IDPs.

“It is delay in the delivery and food distribution that caused this unfortunate incident,” she told newsmen.

She said SEMA and NEMA signed a Memorandum of Understanding which expects the national relief agency to provide foodstuffs while the state agency gives condiments.

“The sole responsibility of SEMA is to provide condiments and this means soup ingredients,” she explained.

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However, she added that both agencies, WFP and other partners have concluded arrangements in their last review meeting few days ago distribution method to the IDPs on regular ration.

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The SEMA chairperson said aid workers from the two agencies would soon commence food distributions to the IDPs having started taking delivery from the store.

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