By CHRIS EKEKE
About 800,000 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the North-East have benefited from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) cash transfer, Mr. Joerg Kuehnel, the regional coordinator has said.
Kuehnel said on Monday in Maiduguri that the beneficiaries were carefully selected for the programme.
“We have done direct cash transfer as part of our life saving programme.
“About 800,000 persons benefited, they were carefully selected, it is not an easy thing selecting people from wide range of areas affected,” he said.
He said that the UNDP had also distributed food, fertiliser and equipment to 30,000 farmers in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states.
“We have distributed food, fertiliser and equipment to 30,000 farmers in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa.
“Although it is not directly life saving, it can hopefully help the farmers bounce back.”
He said that the UNDP had also established basic services in communities ravaged by the insurgency.
“Wherever we work with communities like in Ngom and Kimba, we helped to establish basic services.
“In Ngom for instance, three boreholes were sunk, connecting them with solar system for effectiveness.
“We are also working with the World Health Organisation (WHO) on primary health care unit as well as a referral system in the area.”
The regional coordinator said that UNDP planned to enlighten the people on how to identity planted mines and Improvised Explosive Device (IEDs) in the area.
“We are not a humanitarian agency, so there is a limit to what we do, what we are trying to do is to link people in need to other organisations for immediate help.
‘’This is with longer term community recovery in mind.
“Our mission is to stabilise communities not only to help in food supply.”
He said that the UNDP conducted its operations in three stages.
“There are three stages to stabilisation; the immediate stabilisation where you provide immediate needs of the people, providing some income and then providing permanent means of livelihood.
“Our ambition is to work in 10 communities in every local government area to help establish a network in the communities.”