By Emman Ovuakporie
ABUJA—THE House of Representatives yesterday mandated its Committee on Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, to thoroughly probe allegations of increasing cases of sex abuse, teenage pregnancy and theft of relief materials in IDPs camps, and report back to the House within two months. This was sequel to a motion by Hassan Saleh titled: ’Need to Investigate the Untoward activities going on in various Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) Camps in Nigeria’.
Saleh while making his submission told his colleagues that a national daily had on December 17, 2017 reported how IDP Camps in Nigeria were poorly managed.
He said: ”That there are several IDP Camps all over the country due to the continuous invasion by Boko Haram which has led to displacement of many innocent citizens from their communities.
The lawmaker however expressed concern that “there are a lot of stories in our national dailies, including the New York Times, of the harrowing experiences of rape committed against women and girls by men in the Camps especially those who are supposed to protect them.
“The stories are the same in all the Camps across the country namely: rape, sex for food and materials, rampant pregnancy and abandonment of young mothers and their children. There are also cases of pilfering of relief materials and extortion ravaging the camps; the Human Rights Watch had reportedly written to various government agencies requesting comments on the various allegations emanating from all the camps, but has not received any response.’’
Saleh added that “the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) is mandated under the National Emergency Management Agency Act to provide emergency reliefs to victims of “natural or other disasters.”