As the World commemorates this year’s Humanitarian Day, Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom calls on the United Nations, other international bodies and civil society organisations to remember the over 500,000 Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs in Benue State.
The Governor describes as significant, the theme of the 2018 World Humanitarian Day which is ‘Not a Target’ and expresses sadness that the people of his state have become targets of armed herdsmen attacks in gross violation of global conventions on the right to life and human dignity.
He says the humanitarian crisis occasioned by armed herdmen attacks in the last eight months have overstretched lean resources of the state.
Governor Ortom recounts that hundreds of lives have been lost, homes, schools, churches and health centres destroyed with over 180,000 people in eight Internally Displaced Persons, IDP camps and over 500,000 displaced people either living with relatives or in uncompleted buildings across several local government areas.
He says out of the number of those in the camps, 80,000 have been children forced out of school with over 2,000 pregnant women and 2,766 nursing mothers.
Governor Ortom appreciates humanitarian groups such as United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, UNHCR, civil society organisations and the media for their interventions in bringing succour to the IDPs.
He also commends the Nigerian military for the ongoing Operation Whirl Stroke in which some soldiers have been casualties.
Governor Ortom reassures Benue people that his administration will not relent in its bid to see the end of armed herdsmen attacks aimed at conquest and occupation of the Benue Valley.
Chief Press Secretary
August 19, 2018.