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How Adamawa reduced IDPs’ camps from 16 to 2 — Commissioner

Ahmad Sajoh, the Adamawa Commissioner for  Information and Strategy, said the state government had succeeded in reducing the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps in the state from 16 to two.

The commissioner said this  in a paper he presented at the just concluded regional workshop on experience sharing on the management of disengaged people from Boko Haram in Chad Basin.

The paper was presented  in Maroua town of Cameroon Republic.

Sajoh said that Adamawa was able to reduce the camps by encouraging IDPs to settle in communities willing to accept them.

“We were able to identify a number of communities willing to accept those unfortunate victims and we supported them.

“In all, we have 18 such identified communities.

“But we still have a large number of our citizens outside Nigeria as refugees within the Lake Chad region.

“We also have others in other  locations as IDPs and a reasonable number suffering secondary displacement in their localities but not in their ancestral homes.”

Sajoh lauded the successes so far recorded in the fight against insurgents in the region and the latest move to de-radicalize and reintegrate repentant insurgents.

He, however, called for some steps to be taken before the de-radicalization.

The commissioner said that there was  the need to profile the repentant insurgents to ensure that some elements among them were not given the opportunity to regroup and wreck more havoc.

“There should be some form of restitution for victims of Boko Haram,  especially in identified communities,  where ex-combatants will be reintegrated.

“The concerns of refugees and IDPs should be addressed; they should first be supported to return to their homes before we talk of ex-combatants.

“We must strengthen our communities and build resilience before injecting any repentant insurgent into such communities.”

Sajoh said that Adamawa being  one of the states  seriously affected by the insurgency had conducted a study on its case.

He said that findings  identified the causes of the spread of the insurgency in the state to poverty, drug abuse and the breakdown of community cohesion among others.

“A study of some of the poverty indices in the post-insurgency period in Adamawa  revealed that 11 out of the 21 local government areas have a poverty index of 72 per cent and above.

“Under such circumstances, despondency will set in and citizens tend to lose interest in all organized system including government.

“It becomes a fertile ground for radicalization,” Sajoh said.



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