PROBLEM OF HUMANITARIAN CRISIS AMONG INTERNALLY DISPLACED PERSONS IN NIGERIA (A CASE STUDY OF MAIDUGURI)
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
One of the major humanitarian, human rights and security problem in the world today is Internal displacement. In the words of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, displacement is “arguably the most significant humanitarian challenge that we face.”
It uproots, often violently, millions of people from their homes, families, jobs and communities and exposes its victims to a terrifying range of risks. Just one indication of the precarious plight of internally displaced persons (IDPs) is the fact that some of the highest morbidity and mortality rates recorded in humanitarian emergencies have been among IDPs.
Being left unaddressed, internal displacement also threatens to destabilize countries, regions and even international security and thereby risks generating additional displacement. Indeed, the number of IDPs throughout the world has continued to increase since 1997.
The problem of displaced persons has in recent years become a global concern with its implications (Ladan, 2001). It is on record that the total number of displaced persons is currently estimated around fifty million worldwide, with the majority of these people in Africa and Asia (Olobo & Obaji, 2016).
Displacement across the country in Nigeria is as a result of communal violence, internal armed conflicts and natural disasters such as flood. In any conflict situation and particularly those with ethnic or religious underpinnings, the humanitarian needs are immense and the means to satisfy those needs within the conflict area are severely limited.
Internally displaced civilian populations move from one place to another seeking safety and protection inside their own country. Forced population movements resulting in mass exoduses constitute by their very nature infringements on international human rights and humanitarian law.
In Nigeria, conflicts arising from the activities of Boko Haram in the North East and Fulani herdsmen have resulted in high threats to lives and properties, death of thousands displacements of millions of people.
Contrary to the expectation of the world population, the new world order has been characterized by more unstable and turbulent conflict situations, unhealthy power politics, destructive ethnic insurgencies, national rivalries, religious bigotry, government hypocrisy and endemic poverty, manufactured by globalization.
The humanitarian crisis resulting from activities of insurgents in Maiduguri is showing no sign of abating, going by reports from different agencies in and outside of the country such as (Amnesty International, 2015, International Organization for Migration, 2015 & Eme & Ugwu, 2016). Apart from concerns about the escalating number of internally displaced persons (IDPs), the poor living conditions in the IDPs camps is alarming and calls for more commitment from all concerned.
The growing number of IDPs from Maiduguri and North East at large is as much a threat as the insurgency itself. Reports from International Organization for Migration (2015) has it that the few available camps lack adequate facilities and in addition, their poor sanitation situation makes them breeding grounds for diseases that could balloon into epidemics; something Nigerian government cannot afford.
The situation in that part of the country, where insurgents have held sway for a long time now, leaving blood and tears in their wake has worsened recently, with the taking over of some towns in the region by the insurgents. Fortunately, many of them have been reclaimed by the military and many of the insurgents killed and subdued.
In spite of this success recorded by the military, it is not yet uhuru for residents and indigenes of the affected towns, many of whom are currently forced to take refuge in camps across neighbouring countries of Chad, Cameroun and Niger and states, where they face the challenges of insufficient food and water, and poor sanitation.
The Borno State government has reportedly spent over N20billion in the last three years to assist and resettle IDPs across the state and rebuild their houses, IDMC, 2014. Sadly though, the houses have been destroyed again by the defiant insurgents.
It is almost two years now since about N58billion was raised by the federal government to support victims of terror in the country, but since the ceremony, nothing more has been heard. Could it be that those who promised funds are yet to redeem their pledges? And what is the committee on the funds doing about it, so that the support these victims urgently need can be provided?
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
The activity of the much dreaded Boko Haram sect has tampered with the peace and harmony of Nigeria as a nation and Borno in particular. The victims of war, battle, clash or conflict are not just those who die in the battle, those who live to tell the story live with pains and memories that may never make them remain the same again.
Above and beyond, the displaced persons at the camps have seen a lighter shade of death with the hardship and sufferings they have endured in recent times. Some of them are lost and have no suspicion of the where about of their loved ones. Living in the IDP camp is enough reason for them to be unhappy and upset when they used to be major business owners and land owners.
This study, however, intends to find out the problems of humanitarian crisis of the IDPs at Maiduguri camps in Borno State. It is against this backdrop, that these studies evaluate the problems of the IDPs, to assess the situation of IDPs in Borno,, and what is the condition of the IDPs camps in Maiduguri as well as what are the challenges in meeting the needs of IDPs.
- AIMS OF THE STUDY
The major purpose of this study is to examine the problem of humanitarian crisis among internally displaced persons in Nigeria. Other general objectives of the study are:
1. To examine the nature of internal displacement of persons in Northern Nigeria.
2. To examine the factors that causes humanitarian crisis among internal displacement in Maiduguri.
3. To examine the effect of management of internally displaced persons on the well being of the persons in Maiduguri.
4. To examine the challenges associated with internally displaced persons in Nigeria.
5. To examine the problems of humanitarian crisis among internally displaced persons in Maiduguri.
6. To examine the coping strategies of proper management of internally displaced persons in Nigeria.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. How is the nature of internal displacement of persons in Northern Nigeria?
2. What is the factor that causes humanitarian crisis internal displacement in Maiduguri?
3. What are the effects of management of internally displaced persons on the well being of the persons?
4. What are the challenges associated with internally displaced persons in Nigeria?
5. What are the problems of humanitarian crisis among internally displaced persons in Maiduguri?
6. What are the coping strategies of proper management of internally displaced persons in Nigeria?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESES
- There is no effect of management of internally displaced persons on the well being of persons in Maiduguri.
- There is a significant effect of management of internally displaced persons on the well being of persons in Maiduguri.
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The significance of this study will be of three fold i.e. to the researcher himself, to the body of knowledge and to the society at large.
- To the researcher: The study will further expose him to the concepts insurgency and internal displacement of persons and how it can be properly managed to facilitate proper security in order to facilitate rapid human development in Nigeria.
- To the body of knowledge: Through reviewing of related literature, the study will identify gaps left uncovered or fill by previous researchers and fill these gaps. By doing this, the study must have immensely added to the existing knowledge.
- To the society at large: Similar to that of researcher, it will make the members of the society get acquainted to insurgency and internally displaced persons (IDPs), its problems in the society, and how it affects human condition in his environment which make the economic, cultural, political, social and educational sectors to fall below standard and how it can be properly managed to improve security situation in order to facilitate concrete, rapid development in Northern Nigeria and Nigeria at large.
Additionally, it will be of immense important and serves as source of secondary data or material for future researchers who may want to carry out similar study on the topic under investigation.
1.7 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study is based on the study of problem of humanitarian crisis among internally displaced persons in Nigeria, a case study of Maiduguri
1.8 LIMITATION OF STUDY
Financial constraint– Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
Time constraint– The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
1.9 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Insurgency: Insurgency is a rebellion against a constituted authority (for example, an authority recognized as such by the United Nations) when these taking part in the rebellion are not recognized as bell gents. An insurgency can be fought via counter – insurgency– welfare, and may also be opposed by measures to protect the population, and by political and economic actions of various kinds aimed at undermining the insurgent’s claims against the incumbent regime (Wikipedia, 2015).
Internally Displayed Persons (IDPs):– According to Wikipedia, (2015), an internally displayed person (IDP) is someone who is forced to flee his or her home but who remains within his or her country’s borders.
They are often referred to as refuges although they do not fall within the current legal definition of refugees. Internally displayed people (also known as DPRE in many civil and military organizations) are people or groups of people who have been forced or obliged to flee or to leave their homes or places of habitual residence in particular as a result of or in order to avoid the effects of armed conflicts, situations of generalized violence, violation of human rights, natural or human made disasters, and who have not crossed an internationally recognized state border (Wikipedia, 2015).
Humanitarian Crisis: Is defined as a singular event or a series of events that are threatening in terms of health, safety or well being of a community or large group of people. It may be an internal or external conflict and usually occurs throughout a large land area.
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