DILEMMA OF IDPs IN ADAMAWA: To vote or not to vote?

Mixed feelings have enve­lope the camps of the In­ternally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Adamawa State as they have been faced with contrast­ing fortunes in recent time over their continued stay in the camp and their subsequent hope of re­uniting with the families.

Apart from the little children who are obvious of their pres­ent status, the elderly ones in­cluding the teenagers have been considering their continued stay at the camp.

Ahead of next week’s elec­tions, many of them are said to be interested in going home in order to participate in the civic exercise.

But the problem is exacerbat­ed by the non-possession of the Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) by majority of them. They are said to be worrying on how to get the cards and how to vote their favourite candidates dur­ing the polls.

Besides, the displaced persons mostly women are ruminating over the fate that befell them before their relocation to the camps. Some of the women who were rescued to the camp have tales of to tell on the circum­stances surrounding their being at the camp.

Madam Talatu Asabe who recently delivered a bouncing baby girl was full of thanks to God for the mercies shown on her to have a safe delivery.

According to her, she lost three of her four children to the insurgents attack on their home in Michika.

“I’m in a dilemma now be­cause I don’t know the where­about of my husband since the attack about six months ago, however, I still thank God that

I did not lose the pregnancy to ugly incident, so I don’t know what to say now”, she said.

When our reporter visited the IDP camp located at Damare, the

displaced persons were busy with various types of home chores while some women were seen washing clothes and some washing cooking utensils, the little ones were busy engaging themselves in various sporting activities.

An official of NEMA who spoke on condition of anonym­ity said, the welfare of the IDPs have been of paramount to government and the agency be­cause of the trauma some of the IDPs passed through before get­ting there.

He said adequate security has form of further attacks while medical services at the camps has been at utmost level with the surety of drugs and medical needs for the people.been put in place to forestall any

The NEMA official did not rule out the persistent clamour of the IDPS to go back to their various homes knowing fully well that some villages have been recaptured by the military.

He’s however disclosed that the persistent requests of most of the IDPs to go back home can­not be realistic at the moment because of some pockets of at­tacks by the insurgents in some plans already liberated by the military.

It was also gathered that about four thousand six hundred and eleven people have been killed while properties which included houses, food items, and animals worth billions of naira were lost to insurgents activities in the North and Central Zones of Ad­amawa State.

However, the insurgency vic­tims support committee recent­ly set up by the government has undertaken an assessment of the local government areas af­fected by the insurgency, iden­tify victims and estimate the extent of damages of lives and properties.

The committee was also di­rected to advise the government on how best the victims can be supported and to assess and also recommend short, mid- and long term support for victims by the state and the federal govern­ments.

The committee in its report disclosed that it was only able to visit Gombi, Hong, Maiha, Mubi-North and Mubi-South Local Government Areas and it was unable to visit Michika and Madagali Local Government Ar­eas because of the intense hold of the areas by the insurgents then.

The committee also disclosed that after analyzing submis­sions and practical inspection of the affected local government areas, it gathered that about 4,611 people lost their lives, 150 kidnapped while over 2,063 are said to be missing.

About 2,377 houses and shops, 121 churches and over 40,700 bags of assorted grains were de­stroyed by the insurgents. Also affected were 24 health centres, 30,000 poultry and 1,750 cattle.

The committee also reported that an estimated cost of dam­age by the insurgents in the five local government areas to N7.5billion, while 138,828 IDPs live in various camps and hous­es in across the state.

It was also able to identify and register over 129,655 IDPs while noting that the figure was not the representation of the actual figures of IDPs in the state as some have fled to neighboring Cameroun republic, neighbor­ing states while some are still up the mountains in affected lo­cal government areas while the sum of N537,352 million naira was expended on the care of the IDPs in the various camps.

About the author

Ihesiulo Grace

Leave a Comment