The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has so far recorded about 743, 062 internally displaced persons (IDPs) who were dislocated by conflicts and natural disasters in various parts of the country, Director-General of the agency Muhammad Sani Sidi said.
A statement issued by Manzo Ezekiel, NEMA’s Information Officer said the DG disclosed this at the opening of the annual consultative meeting of the agency in Calabar, Cross River state.
Speaking at the event, which brought together all heads of the State Emergency Management Agencies (SEMAs) Sani Sidi explaining that, 676, 975 persons were displaced by conflicts and 66, 087 by natural disasters as at September 2014.
He also said that “disaster occurrences and the number of affected people have risen significantly in recent years as a result of the impacts of climate change, insurgency, communal conflicts and skirmishes between farmers and pastoralists amongst others. This has no doubt impacted negatively in the area of our development as a nation aside the humanitarian crisis attendant thereto.”
He further stressed the need for require urgent collective action by the stakeholders to complement the steps taken by the Federal Government, which has been providing necessary assistance to the affected persons through the National Emergency Management Agency.
“The challenges faced by displaced persons call for serious commitment, “he said. “NEMA will continue to collaborate with the stakeholders to ensure that the distressed persons are properly taken care of.”
He assured that “we will continue to do this as it constitutes our primary responsibility to our citizens.”
The DG said the consultative meeting was designed to appraise the available structures, facilities, challenges and prospects for efficient and effective disaster management in the country.
Also speaking, Deputy Governor of Cross River State, Mr Effiok Cobham, who represented the Governor Mr Liyel Imoke, while declaring open the meeting appreciated the role of NEMA in the improvement of disaster management in the country.
He urged the participants to identify and advised government on measures that focus on disaster prediction and prevention.