IDPs To Go Back To Their Homes After Raining Season – Speaker

The Speaker of Benue State House of Assembly, Mr Aondona Dajoh, says plans are going on to relocate the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the state to their ancestral homes after the rainy season.

Dajoh, said on Friday, while inspecting the headquarters and warehouse of the State Emergency Management Agency in Makurdi, the state capital, said the relocation might not be possible during the rainy season because the government needed to provide security, shelter and other amenities before relocating them.

He stated, “We are working on it and we are on the same page with the governor but if you ask the people to go back now, where will they stay.

“They need shelter, security and we are working towards that direction because you don’t need to just push people back to where they are not secure and they don’t have roofs over their heads.”

He appealed to the displaced persons to exercise patience, while assuring them that help was on the way.

He noted that it became imperative for him to embark on the visit following the disclosure by the acting Executive Secretary, James Iorpuu, that there was nothing to feed the IDPs.

The speaker expressed concern that the agency whose mandate was to assist Benue people in their worst moments particularly during disasters had been reduced to nothing.

He added, “During the recent crisis in Ikpayongo, Gwer East Local Government, I called the SEMA acting Executive Secretary”

“I told him to arrange relief materials for the displaced persons but he said there was nothing in the warehouse”

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“I am here to see things for myself. It is quite unfortunate that this place, which is supposed to be an emergency unit that will respond to issues day and night, has nothing in the store.”

He promised to bring the matter to the attention of the governor for urgent intervention.

Iorpuu, who commended the speaker for the visit, said according to the data he inherited, there were over 2.1 million IDPs in the state.

He, however, said he was working to authenticate the data.

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