The Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Zulum has issued a directive banning non-governmental organizations and developmental partners from distributing food and other items to resettled internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the state.
The Governor said this is part of efforts targeted at resettling the affected persons and ensuring the resettled persons will be self-reliant.
The directive affects local, national, and international partners as well as NGOs and will affect four IDP camps that have been shut down in Maiduguri and the people resettled in their ancestral communities or in areas of their choice.
However, the distribution of food and other relief items are still allowed in IDP camps that are yet to be closed down.
Zulum reiterated the commitment of his administration to closing all internally displaced persons (IDP) camps within Maiduguri, the state capital by December 31, 2021.
While appreciating the partners and NGOs for their support over the years, the state government said it is time to allow the people to pick up their lives and restart them with dignity.
The letter signed by the Governor himself reads: “The Borno State government wishes to acknowledge and thank you for all your support to the people and government of the state and in particular your support for people displaced internally by insurgency.
“As you are aware, the Borno State government is deeply committed to supporting our people to build resilience and support themselves out of poverty.
“To this end, government has committed to closing all official IDP camps in Maiduguri by December 2021.
“Part of this initiative is to empower people to begin to build back their lives.
“One of the cardinal principles of our resilience-building effort is to wean people off humanitarian food distribution.
“Another principle is to dignify the people and empower them to buy their own food and determine their future.
“In furtherance of this, the Borno State government, after consultation with our communities, have decided that no partner organisation shall henceforth be allowed to distribute food and non-food items in any of our resettled communities.
“This applies to local, national, and international partners. Food distribution will only be allowed in IDP camps and IDPs in host communities for now.”
“While we look forward to your conforming with this decision, please accept my appreciation of your partnership and support to the people and government of Borno State.”
The governor also said development partners will need clearance from the government to ensure coordination and check duplication in all new areas they wish to distribute food and non-food items.
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