Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouq, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development says the Federal Government was willing to collaborate with the Republic of Argentina on the adoption of White Helmets resolution of the UN General Assembly.
Farouq disclosed this when the Ambassador of the Republic of Argentina to Nigeria, Mr Alenjandro Herrero, led a delegation on a courtesy visit to her in Abuja, according to a statement signed by Mrs Nneka Anibeze, the Special Assistant to Farouq on Media, issued on Wednesday, in Abuja.
The government of Argentina established an international civilian body, now known as the White Helmet Commission, to coordinate its participation in international response to humanitarian emergencies in 1994.
The Commission was made responsible for designing and implementing humanitarian assistance, relying on the expertise of volunteers from various disciplines and specialities.
Farouq, who said that the core objectives of the White Helmets aligned with the vision of her ministry, commended the Argentine government for its humanitarian activities, pledging support for the White Helmets initiative.
“I strongly believe that the work of the White Helmets can be implemented through the National Humanitarian Development Peace Framework (NHDP).
“This would support Nigeria’s strategy and response to humanitarian crises and socio-natural disasters, with a specific focus on rehabilitation, reconstruction, development interventions, and promoting disaster risk prevention and management.
“The Ministry supports the use of skills and expertise of volunteers for humanitarian and development activities, in a coordinated and coherent manner, through existing national structures.
“Hence, we will work with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in line with the vision and priorities of the Federal Government of Nigeria, to extend our support to the adoption of the UN resolution on “White Helmets”.
“The Ministry will also work with you to localize the White Helmet initiative in Nigeria,” Farouq said.She also reiterated the ministry’s commitment to work and collaborate with international partners in providing humanitarian action and socio-economic interventions, to significantly improve the livelihoods of the vulnerable population in Nigeria.
Also speaking, Herrero said the government of Argentina was seeking the support of countries to help expand and localise the White Helmet initiative.“We are here is to ask for the support of the Federal Government of Nigeria to support a resolution that will be adopted at the UN General Assembly, at the end of this year, regarding the White Helmets’ operation around the world.
“The White Helmets are part of our Ministry of foreign Affairs. They participate in relief and humanitarian activities around the world and every three years, the continuity of the mechanism is being voted at the General Assembly.
“We request the support of the Nigerian government as the next adoption comes up between November and December,” Herrera said.