Leke Baiyewu, Abuja
The Leader of the Senate, Ali Ndume, has said government agencies are frustrating humanitarian efforts in the North-East.
He said several agencies, whose responsibilities did not include the management of Internally Displaced Persons, were now operating in the North-East.
Ndume, who is representing the Borno-South senatorial district in the Senate, said this when the leadership of the National Refugees Commission visited him in Abuja on Monday.
The senator criticised the National Emergency Management Agency for playing the role of the NRC in the management of IDPs, adding that several Ministries, Departments and Agencies, whom he described as busybodies, were frustrating the rehabilitation process in the North-East.
He said, “I told some people the last time that so many organisations are doing what I call ‘busybody outreach’ because that is not their role. Even NEMA is playing an emergency role extended for a long period; they are supposed to be an interventionist organisation that will start something before you (others) come in.
“I see people going into areas, even areas where there are natural disasters like flooding and outbreaks of communicable diseases; immediately after the emergency intervention, they are supposed to leave the place for others because people are displaced and once people are displaced, they need to leave so that you (NRC) can go in and play your role.
“You will have to stand up and position yourself properly so that you will be able to play the role. It is this ‘busybody’ by other MDAs that is causing national embarrassment and that is why the other international agencies are reluctant and suspicious. We have a situation where some people are using this unfortunate situation to defraud innocent people or charity organisations and NGOs that are willing to help.”
The lawmaker also decried the low presence of the Federal Government in the region, saying that international organisations had been playing more roles in the intervention programme.
He stated that a body like the NRC, which was saddled with the responsibility of managing displaced persons, should have been empowered to lead the IDPs’ rehabilitation.
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