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Senate votes N10 billion to resettle IDPs



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Orders repatriation of displaced Nigerians in neighbouring countries

The Senate yesterday directed its Appropriation Committee to rejig the 2016 Appropriation Bill with a view to allocating the sum of N10 billion for the relocation and resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states.

The upper chamber said the money should be taken from Service Wide Vote as provided in the budget.

The resolution followed the adoption of a motion by Senate Leader, Senator Mohammed Ali Ndume, and eight others entitled “Interim financial and material support/assistance to IDPs returnees in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states.”

Apart from the fund, the Senate also asked the Federal Government to release grains from the strategic grain reserve to the insurgency-affected states.

It urged the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the refugee commission to make special arrangement for repatriation and resettlement of Nigerian refugees in Cameroun, Niger and Chad.

The upper chamber asked its relevant committees to write a letter of appreciation to the embassies of the host countries where the refugees were accommodated.

It said that the Victim Support Fund should also allocate reasonable amount for immediate relocation and resettlement of IDPs pending the short and medium term plans they might have.

Taraba, Plateau, Benue and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja, it said, should also benefit from the arrangement.

Ndume in his lead debate noted that there was no doubt that the Federal Government is winning the war against insurgency in the North East particularly in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states.

Senate President, Abubakar Bukola Saraki, said the Senate should commend the efforts of the security agencies, “because without them the idea of the IDPs going home will be impossible.”

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