The federal government has commenced the process of repatriating over 230,000 Nigerian refugees in the Lake Chad region.
A breakdown of the figure shows 122,000 of them are in Niger Republic, Chad hosts 30,000 while 80,000 are in Cameroon.
Federal Commissioner National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI) Hajiya Imaan Sulaiman-Ibrahim, announced this at a recent media parley with journalists in Abuja.
She said President Muhammadu Buhari has constituted a Technical Working Group (TWG) headed by her, to get the job done.
While NCFRMI would drive the process, Imaan said the ministryof humanitarians would guide and direct the process.
The NCFRMI boss said, “there are requirements to be met before repatriation. It’s been an ongoing process since 2017. And now a Technical Working Group (TWG) which I chair has been put in place by Mr President.”
She said the TWG comprises various stakeholders with different roles to ensure the success of the exercise.
Some of the stakeholders, Imaan said, would be charged with the provision of employment, while others would take on the role of providing food and non-food items.
While assuring government would continue to play its role in ensuring a better deal for these ‘people of concerns,’ she, however said “humanitarian crisis is a societal problem which no government can handle alone.”
On her vision for the commission, Imaan who resumed office about four months ago, said “the vision is always being there since it came into existence some 32 years ago.
“The good news is that the system is working, we have a working system and all we need do is strengthen the institution and train the staff on effective data management and ensure better revenue mobilisation. The commission staff are willing to work and provide durable solutions to the humanitarian crisis we have before us.”
She also reiterated her resolve to ensure zero-huger for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), saying they deserved a better living standard.
On the proposed Project Resettlement Cities which she described as another durable solution, the NCFRMI head said works were nearing completion in Borno, Katsina and Zamfara pilot schemes while that of Edo had not taken off because of land issue.