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UN launches $1.05b humanitarian response plan for North-East



The United Nations (UN) has launched the 2018 humanitarian response plan for the North-East with a funding requirement of $1.05 billion and a plan to reach 6.1 million people in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states.

The launch of the 2018 humanitarian response plan, held yesterday in Abuja, had in attendance Ministers of Agriculture, Water Resources, Communication, Health and Minister of State for Budget and National Planning.

The UN Humanitarian Resident Co-ordinator in Nigeria, Edward Kallon, noted that over 7.7 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance but 6.1 million of the people are targeted for assistance in the response plan by 60 organisations, including UN agencies and international and national non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

He said the aim is to provide food assistance through improved agriculture to 3.7 million people, support 2.7 million vulnerable women, children and men with protection services, prioritise the provision of medical care to 5.1 million people, provide nutritional supplements and support to 2.7 million people, including children, pregnant and nursing women who are malnourished.

Kallon, who stated that they also intend to provide access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation facilities to 2.7 million people, provide shelter and basic household items to 1.3 million persons living in camps or host-communities, added that 2.2 million children and teachers would be supported through education assistance and for long-term impact, about 2.7 million people would be supported in accessing basic public services to restart their lives.

He stressed that a robust and improved humanitarian response would be essential in hardest-hit Borno State and that due to the protracted nature of the crisis, new needs are being created which require longer-term assistance for the 1.6 million who are displaced from their homes and communities that host them.

Meanwhile, the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, noted that the Nigerian government had been providing additional resources to support military operations and security and that access to communities in the North-East had been improved compared to what was the case in the last three years.

She disclosed that the Federal Government appropriated $3.1 billion for the North-East crisis in the 2018 budget and also budgeted $1 billion for security in Nigeria.

Ahmed said that the Nigerian government would be focusing on three key priorities, including protection and gender, localisation of the response which would build on existing partnership between international and national organisations, and community engagement of ensuring communities are at the centre of humanitarian action and decision-making.

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