The United Nations on Monday released 13 million dollars from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) to provide life-saving assistance to 250,000 people in the North-east area of Nigeria. Mr Stephen O’Brien, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, issued the release.
According to the UN, the destruction of crops and looting of livestock have left many people unable to support their families. “No fewer than 50,000 people need seeds and tools for the upcoming planting season and CERF funding will help them to rebuild their livelihoods.”
O’Brien said that a significant number of women and girls, and also men and boys, have suffered or witnessed terrible abuses. The CERF funds, he said, would enable humanitarian partners to provide critical psychosocial support and protection services.
“People have experienced unspeakable suffering due to the violence perpetrated by Boko Haram. We now have better access finally, and a chance to help them. The international community must take advantage of this opening to reach people with essential services and build on the CERF allocation to scale up the response,” he said.
The fund, he added, would support the provision of food, cash for food purchase, special child nutritional supplements, protection and health services to the most vulnerable people in the newly accessible areas through disbursements to the Food and Agriculture Organisation. Others are through the UN Department for Safety and Security, UNFPA, UNHCR, UNICEF and World Food Programme.
The UN says the humanitarian Response Plan for Nigeria was revised upwards by 51 million dollars in June. The UN is also calling for additional 279 million dollars for the humanitarian plan in Nigeria. To date, the UN said that the plan is only 22 per cent funded.