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  • Updated: May 28, 2024

Shettima launches action plans to address internal displacement

Shettima launches action plans to address internal displacem

Vice President Kashim Shettima has unveiled the state action plans for addressing internal displacement in Nigeria on Monday at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.

During the unveiling, Shettima emphasized the need for global collaboration to tackle the issue of internal displacement in the country.

The action plan is part of the United Nations Secretary-General’s solution agenda on internal displacement. Its objectives are to provide durable solutions for internally displaced persons, prevent future displacement crises, and ensure effective protection and assistance for those currently displaced.

This program is being implemented in four northern states: Adamawa, Benue, Borno, and Yobe.

According to News Agency of Nigeria, the Vice-President pledged the federal government’s unwavering commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of displaced citizens.

He outlined the strategy adopted by the President Bola Tinubu’s administration in tackling the country’s internal displacement challenge.

“For a country that has endured the devastations of economic disadvantages across generations, we cannot afford further expansion in the displacement of our people.

” So, we remain committed to ensuring that each displaced individual returns to a safer environment and is given a lifeline to start afresh.

“Let us harness the strength of our partnerships, both local and international, to bring about lasting change.”

He welcomed the support of the United States and other global partners, stressing that the task ahead demands a united front that transcends political divides.

” We are here to craft solutions that will outlive us, that will offer future generations a place of hope, a home for all, and a land of opportunity where dreams can be pursued without worry.

“The journey is not merely about addressing the symptoms of displacement but also about tackling the root causes,” he stated.

Outlining the strategy of Tinubu’s administration, Shettima pledged investment in sustainable development, education, and economic opportunities as critical components of a comprehensive solution.

“By doing so, we not only address the immediate needs of the displaced but also create a foundation for a more stable and prosperous future.”

He called for collaborative efforts transcending borders to bring about lasting change, stating that “the task ahead is immense, but with determination, unity, and a clear vision, we can make a profound difference”.

On her part, the UN deputy secretary-general, Amina Mohammed, commended the efforts of the state governments in drafting action plans for durable solutions to internal displacement.

Speaking virtually through an online conferencing platform, Mohammed, said attaining such solutions “is a priority for Nigeria and for the UN.

She noted the global number of internally displaced persons has doubled in 10 years to nearly 76 million globally.

“Over four million Nigerians remain in search of solutions to their forced displacement. The state action plans capture the first essential steps towards solutions.”

Earlier, the UN assistant secretary-general and special advisor on durable solutions, Robert Piper, commended Nigeria’s commitment to the programme.

“Today, despite the warnings and the real challenges, I have the honour to say, on behalf of the Secretary-General, that Nigeria is the first of all our 15 pilot countries to formally launch government plans placing over four million IDPs and Returnees on pathways to solutions.”

Piper said the launch of the programme was evidence of the

political commitment to addressing the plight of IDPs in the country.

” In many ways, the plans you launch today provide a model of how governments can take responsibility for ending displacement.

” Let me reiterate our commitment on behalf of the United Nations: We will keep supporting on the ground; we will help rally donors and we will chase missing partners.

” We will bring lessons from elsewhere; we will celebrate your successes; we may occasionally bring you unwelcome news sometimes, as friends must; but we will stand behind you. We fail or succeed together.”

Also, Gov. Babagana Zulum of Borno, said the state government was fully committed to the implementation of the action plans on durable solutions.

He noted that 15 per cent of the state’s annual budget would be dedicated to projects undertaken under the initiative.

Zulum recalled the efforts of the state government in the past few years in returning displaced persons to their communities.

He assured stakeholders at the meeting that the government’s commitment to the cause of displaced persons remains unwavering.

On his part, Gov. Hyacinth Alia of Benue state said the launch of the plans was a beacon of hope and catalyst for the transformation of lives and livelihoods in communities affected by conflict.

He commended Shettima’s inspirational leadership as well as the commitment of all the development partners involved in the project.

He noted that the commitment of Shettima aligns with the vision of the state government to build a society where all residents can live in peace and harmony.

In the same vein, Gov. Mai Mala Buni of Yobe said the state government has executed projects across health, education, social welfare and security.

Buni said that this was towards the bid to ensure that displaced persons in the state return to their communities safely.

He reaffirmed the commitment of the state government in the operationalisation of the action plan by allocating five per cent of the state’s annual budget over the next three years.

Buni called on development partners involved in the programme not to relent in their efforts toward the success of the initiative.

The British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Richard Montgomery, commended the progress witnessed during his recent visit to the North-East and the government’s approach to encouraging more investments.

“The progress I witnessed during my visit to the North-East recently deserves commendation.

” Nigeria is the first to prove that government-led intervention is possible. We are proud to be part of the process,” he stated.

He also called for the mobilisation of new financing, saying “we need to mobilise additional bilateral and multilateral financing to support these plans.

“We should also think carefully about how to mobilise Nigeria’s vibrant private sector, not necessarily as a donor but as the engine for economic growth and job creation.”

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