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United Nations marks one year attack on Rann, seeks release of aid workers


[File] Patients for the free Presidential Committee on Northeast Initiative eye treatment were selected from various Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps in Maiduguri and from host communities. PHOTO:

The United Nations, Nigeria yesterday marked one year since the deadly attack on Rann town in Borno State, which claimed lives of three young aid workers, who were providing life-saving humanitarian assistance to thousands of Internally Displaced People (IDPs).

The organization also called for immediate release of Alice Lokshah, a nurse and mother, kidnapped by Boko Haram insurgents during the deadly on Borno, last year.

Doctor Izuogu Anthony Onyedikachi, Emmanuel Yawe Sonter, and Ibrahim Lawan were working in challenging and remote conditions in northeast Nigeria, just eight kilometres from the border with Cameroon, and faced personal hardship, living away from their families before they were killed while Alice Lokshah, a nurse is still being held but the UN calls for a safe return to her family.

UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Mr. Edward Kallon made the appeal in a statement issued by Samantha Newport, Head of Communications, (OCHA).

He said, “Today is a day of mixed emotions for everyone involved in humanitarian work. We remember those we lost as a result of the attack on Rann. In their memory we also celebrate the strength, resilience and compassion of the humanitarian spirit. We honour our departed friends for their sacrifice, courage and selfless service. The most meaningful tribute to the lives of these aid workers is to carry on their work with conviction in the humanitarian principles we stand for and uphold”.

He stated that the attack on 1 March 2018 sent shockwaves through the community of aid workers from the United Nations and non-governmental organisations noting that any time violence claims an innocent life, it affects us all.

“But even more so when it robs us of young and talented professionals, full of hope and promise, dedicated to serving their fellow countrymen and women. That is a shock that strikes at the very core of our humanity. Non-state armed groups also kidnapped three female aid workers in this attack”, he stated.

The international organisation lauded the humanitarian spirit of Saifura Hussaini Ahmed Khorsa and Hauwa Mohammed Liman, both midwives, who were executed by their captors in September 2018 and October 2018 respectively.

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