COVID-19: UN announces emergency response for displaced, vulnerable in Nigeria

by Muizat Hameed

The United Nations in Nigeria has declared emergency response measures to mitigate the spread of coronavirus.

While announcing this on Tuesday March 31st, 2020, UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Mr. Edward Kallon, stated that the emergency measures would focus mainly on the displaced and most vulnerable people living in the North eastern part of Nigeria: Borno, Adamawa and Yobe States.

He added that the measures would also address immediate humanitarian consequences of the covid-19 pandemic peradventure it spread to North-east Nigeria.

“We will not wait for COVID-19 to reach camps for the internally displaced persons before we act. They have already suffered enough from the decade long conflict and our priority is to ensure the continuous delivery of life-saving assistance, especially health services, to the most vulnerable women, children and the elderly who need special attention,” Mr. Edward stated.

“More than ever, it is crucial for vulnerable people to have access to not only water, soap, shelters, but also food, education and protection,” he added.

Mr. Edward also highlighted that the United Nations and its humanitarian partners are actively involved in Camp Coordination and Camp Management (CCCM) in IDP sites across the three states in support of the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) and National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).

“Humanitarian partners are installing hand washing stations in IDP camps and ensuring supply of clean water. Partners are also distributing soap and teaching women how to produce their own.” he said

The UN has also developed awareness-raising and prevention messages, leaflets, posters, animations and videos specific for IDPs and other vulnerable people in the North-east.

It has also launched sensitization campaigns across various Nigerian states, reaching millions of Nigerians.

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