Relief materials distributed to IDPs in Mangu.

Council boss seeks help as Tearfund, CRUDAN, others provide succour

By Marie-Therese Nanlong

Jos – The Transition Committee Chairman of Mangu local government area, Plateau State, Mr. Markus Artu, said the local government area has about 80,000 internally displaced persons camped at 11 locations and called for more collaborative efforts from stakeholders to ensure the communities are safe so the people can return to their ancestral homes and businesses.

Artu spoke at one of the displaced persons camps in Mangu town when the Christian Rural and Urban Development Association of Nigeria, CRUDAN, in partnership with Tearfund with the support from Start Fund provided non-food items worth millions of naira to the IDPs in Mangu, Kasuwan Ali and Gindiri, all in Mangu local government area.

He stated, “… It is heartwarming when you see organizations like CRUDAN and others coming in here with some form of relief, it brings some succour but beyond that, the government is working with security agencies to see how fast normalcy can return to the villages so that these people can go back to their homes. Government can’t do it alone that is why we are appealing to spirited individuals, donor agencies, and International organizations to further the efforts to see that their plights are addressed…

“We have an estimated 80,000 IDPs across 11 different camps in the local government area. The action by Major General Abdulsalam Abubakar, the GOC and Commander Operation Safe Haven has brought some relief and promptness in security agents respond to some of the challenges… We hope that going forward, this kind of attempt will continue…”

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Earlier, Ikponmwosa Omoigiade of Tearfund and Tulari Tine of CRUDAN explained why they came to offer help to give succour to some of the displaced persons.

Omoigiade said, “We are here to provide some relief materials to those affected by the recent crisis in Mangu, they are taking refuge here in a school having been displaced from their homes. We took it upon ourselves with support from Start Fund and our partner, CRUDAN to see how we can provide some support…”

Tine added, “We are here to provide relief for people affected by the crisis, we are targeting 2,711 households and for each, we are providing blankets, foam mats, toiletries, dignity kits for the women etc. This project is holistic, apart from the non-food items, we are also having a sensitization on gender-based violence to curb other incidences that arise when people are displaced.

“We are also having trauma counselling and healing, we have trained people in the camps who are expected to also provide trauma healing for affected people. We are in three camps in Mangu, Kasuwan Ali and Gindiri…”

Some beneficiaries spoke with, appreciated the gesture and were all unanimous in seeking support to enable them to return home to face their farm work.