UN, minister seek private sector intervention in humanitarian crisis
The United Nations (UN) Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, Edward Kallon and the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmad, have made an urgent appeal to the private sector in Nigeria for financial intervention to save the lives of 8.5 million people affected by insurgency in the North-East.
Speaking at a private sector dinner yesterday in Lagos, Kallon noted that the UN has made straightforward efforts towards scaling up the humanitarian assistance in north-eastern Nigeria, with its agencies and partners stabilising their staffing and engaging experienced people to assist in the humanitarian crisis.
Noting that the crisis, which is of global magnitude, requires the intervention of Nigeria’s very vibrant and robust private sector, Kallon added that he believes the sector has a big role to play in providing resources to scale up assistance and invest in rebuilding and stabilising the North-East. He, however, said that this humanitarian response by the private sector is very critical as the sector drives the growth of any nation.
Also at the event, Mrs. Ahmad noted that her ministry is engaging the key sectors of the economy – health, agriculture, water resources, infrastructure and other agencies in the humanitarian response.
Lamenting that both Christians and Moslems have been affected by Boko Haram insurgency, the minister said that both the Federal and state governments, international community and the private sector have the moral obligation to assist all affect by the crisis.
The minister said: “About 26 million people in Adamawa, Yobe and Maiduguri are directly or indirectly affected by this crisis and 14 million are in dire need of help. Intervention in the area will help to improve negative competitions. As business leaders, it is important to set the lead for others to follow. They should arise and join hands to end the humanitarian crisis in the north-east.”