DG NEMA visits victims of Monguno, Borno IDP fire outbreak

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BY INUSA NDAHI, MAIDUGURI

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The Director General, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Mustapha Maihaja on Thursday visited victims of fire incident which erupted at Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camp in Monguno Local Government Area of Borno state which claimed the lives of three persons with over 70% makeshift camps razed down.

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The camp was newly established following attacks by insurgents which forced thousands of IDPs out of Baga, Cross Kauwa, Kukawa and other communities in Northern Borno Senatorial District.

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The fire outbreak which occurred as a result of one woman (IDP) cooking close to the make – shift camp had caused serious devastation, in which, President Muhammad Buhari ordered the NEMA DG to immediately pay visit and intervene.

Maihaja while briefing Journalists sympathized with the victims and prayed God to grant eternal rest to the souls of those who lost their lives, adding that the agency in collaboration with development partners have already provided make shift camps to the victims that would last for more than 20 years.

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He said, “NEMA which is an agency of the Federal Government charged with the responsibility of disaster management is fully committed to the welfare and well being of our IDPs.

” We were here last week with my operational team from Abuja on the directive of Mr. President, but due to postponed elections, the logistics could not be conveyed as as scheduled, but we were able to do so yesterday.

“While we were at the camp, we saw things for ourselves and it was very devastating. We were able to identify nine traditional rulers in the camp before we engaged them in the distribution process.

“We have distributed food and nonfood items in the affected camp. Items distributed include; professional camps procured by the agency, mattresses, blankets, clothing, assorted backs of rice, sphaggheti, beans, millet exetra.

“Our men are already there, and we hope they will distribute them today (Thursday).

At least, the total number of IDPs in that particular camp is 9,000 and about 70% make shift houses were razed down by the inferno.

“We have started erecting modern make shift camps in partnership with our development partners, and these make shift tent would last for more than 20 years.

” I want to assure our IDPs that we will continue to give our maximum support to cushion their hardship. I want to also acknowledge the cooperation and support from the Borno State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) under the leadership of its Chairperson, Dr. Mrs. Yabawa Kolo in managing all IDP camps in the state,” Maihaja stated.

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