Plans to address the humanitarian issues facing eight million Boko Haram insurgent victims in Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe States have been made public by the federal government.
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Dr. Betta Edu, made the revelation during a visit to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.
The Minister further disclosed that about 15.7 million vulnerable Nigerian households are in the federal government’s social register at the moment, which amounts to 62 million individuals, adding that the target of the federal government is to double the number of people in the social register.
Edu, who was at Muna Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp in Maiduguri, a camp hosting about 52,000 displaced persons from various local government areas of the state, said to ensure that victims of the insurgency do not fall into poverty, her entourage, comprising the management team of the ministry and humanitarian partners, visited the IDP camp, including the rehabilitation center for rescued Chibok Schoolgirls and repentant insurgents with family members at Bulumkutu for assessment.
She said: “We were there to see people who are in need and how we can liaise with the state government, local government, humanitarian partners, and even people in the communities to ensure that we reach out to them.
“The President is not playing games with poverty eradication; he is not mincing words about it. His target is to pull millions of Nigerians out of poverty by the year 2030. That is why we are out on the field, and we will continue to be in the field until we reach the last person in this country.
“We are going to come back here with more durable solutions, beginning with micro- and medium-sized enterprises, among other things. We will be bringing solutions, including shelters and livelihood programs, and reintegrating them into society so that they can run their day-to-day lives and fend for their families. Gone are the days when we offered them only fish; we want to teach them how to fish,” the Minister said.
At the Government House in Maiduguri, where she and her entourage paid a courtesy visit to the state Governor, Prof. Babagana Zulum, the minister informed him that she was in the state to see things on the ground, noting that the visit was her first official outing since her assumption of office.
She added that she visited to see how the ministry can support the state in intervening to address the needs of the victims of insurgency.
The governor, while welcoming her to the state, assured her that the state government would collaborate with her to address the challenges facing vulnerable citizens of the state.