The United Nations, international and local NGOs and representatives of the Nigerian government Thursday morning at the UN House in Abuja met to mark the tenth year of the Boko Haram crisis in north-east Nigeria.
In attendance were Governor of Yobe, Mai Mala Buni, Chairman of the North East Development Commission, Paul Tarfa, Director General of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Mutapha Maihaja, among others.
The humanitarian community emphasised the immense humanitarian needs caused by the crisis and the necessity to continue scaling up life-saving assistance.
They reiterated their commitment to alleviate the suffering of the most vulnerable in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states.
They also reaffirmed their commitment to work together to help people not only survive but also rebuild their lives and their communities.
“The crisis that started ten years ago is still far from over,” stressed Mr. Edward Kallon, United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria.
“We are here today to remember those who have lost their lives in the conflict, and to remind of those still struggling to survive and rebuild their lives.
“Ten years on, it is not the time for us to spare any effort. In this very critical period, we must collectively redouble efforts, with support at all levels – locally, nationally and internationally.”
Over the last decade, the conflict has claimed the lives of some 27,000 civilians and devastated entire communities, villages and towns across the three most-affected states.
“We have to pay attention to the needs and rights of people, especially those of women and children, and support local organisations to play a more visible role in the response.
“The protracted crisis in the north-east is of matter to the entire country. We don’t want this crisis to last another 10 years,” said Ms. Josephine Habba, President of the Nigeria NGO Network on Humanitarian Development Initiative (NINGONET).
Nigeria’s humanitarian crisis remains among one of the most severe in the world with 7.1 million people in need of life-saving assistance and 1.8 million people uprooted from their homes – the vast majority of them women and children.