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23 Jun, 2023 12:41

Internally displaced Nigerians appeal for humanitarian aid

NGO head Sydney Usman Godwin says the United Nations should ensure that refugee migration problems are taken seriously
Internally displaced Nigerians appeal for humanitarian aid

World Refugee Day, a United Nations initiative, was observed on Tuesday, with migration and humanitarian agencies and activists advocating for inclusion and solutions for people forced to flee their home country due to conflict or persecution.

As part of its commemorative coverage, RT spoke with some Nigerians who have been internally displaced by Boko Haram and other non-state armed groups, as well as by clashes between herders and farmers, and are currently living in camps in Africa's most populous country.

They expressed concern about the lack of basic necessities in their camps and appealed to national authorities and the international community, particularly the UN, to pay attention to their needs.

"We are calling on the new government to cater for us and to come to our aid because the fact that we are displaced doesn’t mean we are not Nigerians. We have constitutional rights, and they have to protect us," a local said.

Sydney Usman Godwin, CEO of humanitarian NGO 'Take It Back,' told RT that refugees must be treated with "every respect and dignity," while also urging the UN to "scrutinize" and "re-orient" member states' commitments to address refugee migration issues.

According to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the number of refugees globally stood at 35.3 million at the end of 2022, an increase of more than eight million compared to the previous year.

Violent extremism has pushed some three million Nigerians out of their homes as of November 2021, especially in parts of the north-east, middle belt, and the north-west, the UNHCR reported.