The International Committee of the Red Cross head arrives in “forgotten town” of Maiduguri, saying few people are realising the real scale of problem with refugees.
Peter Maurer, who heads International committee of the Red Cross, upon his arrival to Maiduguri, assessed the situation with refugees in the capital of the Borno state as one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world.
Thousands of refugees don’t have any shelter but just live under the trees.
“The most of the population in Borno state has been moved to Maiduguri, with its population grown more than twice, making it a city with more than two million inhabitants,” told Peter Maurer adding that “this is a big refugee crisis – one of the largest in the world”. Mr Maurer told that refugees “lack everything which they need to make their life a human life“.
Mr Maurer’s colleague, Ahmed Hersi, who heads the ICRC’s office in Maiduguri, confirms his words, saying as many as a million people found refuge in Borno’s capital. Still, thousands have to sleep in the open, with no shelter at all.
“Now, the arrival of the rainy season will bring new challenges and the threat of disease,” says Mr. Hersi, “We need to move fast to improve the living and sanitary conditions.”
He says that for many months ICRC was the only international humanitarian organisation addressing refugee crisis in Maiduguri.
ICRC has distributed 1-month ration to 51,000 refugees in Maiduguri. It includes 12.5 kg of rice, 4kg of beans, 167 g of salt and 2 litres of cooking oil per person.
But refugees still need much more – water, clothes, healthcare, medicine and schooling. So it seems solving humanitarian crisis in Maiduguri is going to be one of the most difficult and urgent Muhammadu Buhari’s challenges after being sworn in as president of Nigeria.
The Borno State Government has recently requested the sum of $20million to help resettle refugees displaced by the Boko Haram insurgency from their homes.