The Victims Support Fund (VSF) today 15th January 2016 held a roundtable meeting with the National and International agencies to brief on their findings of their assessment missions to Bama, Dikwa and Ngala Local Governments of Borno State.

The objective of the visits was to carry out a rapid needs assessment of the recently recovered areas. In particular, the visit was to determine the scale of needs created by the increasing recovery of rural settlements from Boko Haram, the movement of rescued civilians to designated safe havens and the attendant humanitarian challenges. The major challenged identified and shared with stakeholders include:

  • Food
  • Shelter
  • Water and Sanitation
  • Health
  • Security
  • Education
  • Insufficient camp management

In view of the foregoing, some key challenges were tabled:

As more grounds are captured and the situation stabilizes, more IDPs will be brought to safer areas and the challenges of managing them may become a perpetual problem.

Should the IDPs be discouraged from migrating to Maiduguri given the State Government’s Plans to relocate all IDPs to their communities? What will be best strategy for return?

Camp Management – The challenges of managing security, logistics and needs in the newly recovered areas

The challenges of movement with security not adequately improved. The management of camps away from Maiduguri will present hazards and peculiarities that must be responded to.

The situation calls for greater liaison with the military who currently hold and manage majority of the IDPs outside the state capital.

Should there be a strategy for the renovation of standing buildings in the communities as an interim measure as against setting up camps to house IDPs?

There are also challenges around security because the military is still not comfortable about the return to communities because of the possibility of the insurgents slipping back into the communities.

In their response, the various agencies and NGOs were pleased with the information shared and interested in collaborating to bring succour to victims of insurgency. They promised to go back to their organisations and evaluate the information to identify entry points.