Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno state has called on the United Nations (UN), Federal Government of Nigeria and the International Community to continue to support the rebuilding of the northeast integrated development programs and projects, particularly in Borno state.
He also assured that adequate security will be put in place immediately within and outside Ngom village before the IDPs finally relocate to occupy the newly reconstructed village to ensure the safety of lives and property of the returnees who were displaced about 4 years ago by the boko Haram insurgents.
The governor stated this Tuesday at the village during the handing over ceremony of the UN £1 Million 300 houses, a clinic, a primary school, a motor park, 20 shops, 188 market stalls and 2 solar energy boreholes constructed and drilled respectively with funds from the UNDP, BOSG, Swiss Humanitarian and the People of Japan.
He further expressed gratitude and appreciation to the Swiss Humanitarian, the People of Japan and Federal General, saying, “it gladdens my heart that for the. first time in history, houses are built for all the strata of the IDPs.”
” They have done a remarkable job which will very well address the integrated development programs and projects for the displaced persons.
“I would also like the allocation of the houses to be jointly done between the husbands and the wives to avoid the husbands sending away their old wives and marry new wives. The ownership should be jointly not singly”, Shettima said.
The State Commissioner of Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Resettlement, RRR, Professor Babagana Umara said the project was the first of its kind and jointly executed by the Swiss Humanitarian, UNDP, BOSG and FG to empower the youths and women NASS well resettle the displaced persons.
According to him, the entire project was executed 50% by the Borno State Government, BOSG and 50% by the Swiss Humanitarian and the People of Japan where the houses and primary school, police station and clinic were constructed by the UNDP and People of Japan fund while BOSG constructed motor park, market stalls, shops and drilled boreholes totaling about N360 million equivalent to £1 million.
He said in the next two weeks, the IDPs will be resettled as all facilities and amenities were ready and allocated to the IDPs in addition to agricultural inputs and poverty allocation materials for distribution to 100 beneficiaries under the UNDP integrated development programs.
The commissioner added that a police station and electricity projects were ongoing under the sane program in Ngom village for the returnees while similar electricity project from Maiduguri city was proposed to link Ngom and Mafa town of Mafa LGA of Borno state and work will soon commence.
Professor Umara thanked the governor for supporting the program and appreciated the UNDP, Swiss Humanitarian and the People of Japan for their funding, disclosing that the total amount of funds earmarked was 20 Million Euros for 20 communities.
He said out of the fund, UNDP was given 30% of the fund to execute this project in collaboration with the Borno State Government while commending the military and other security agencies for their services in the past one year in the area.
UNDP Country Representative, Mr. Edward Kallon while handing over the houses, clinic, school, boreholes, shoos, stalls, and motor park among others said his organization intervention program came up after the Ngom village was attacked 4 years ago as a vibrant business center and livestock market to reconstruct their village for about 2600 residents.
He said out of the total number of households, UNDP constructed houses for about 2700 people out of the registered 1600 IDPs at the IDPs camp and the rest of the displaced persons living in host communities.
Mr. Edward noted that the efforts were geared towards strengthening the resilience by empowering people to improve their livelihood and make them self reliant.
He added that during the construction work over 500 youths were engaged as labour and provided with income, pointing out that, the integrated development program has immensely done well in the raining season for the 2 million IDPs in the state and 7 million in the North East.
The UNDP Country Representative said the intervention was to provide a solid foundation for the IDPs to start a new life and live comfortability while thanking the sate and Federal governments for their collaboration and allowing UNDP to touch the Lives of the people in the state and assured continuous support to strengthen resilience of the displaced persons.
The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Hajiya Zanab Ahmed represented by Dr. A. G. Gregory said the project was laudable efforts to set Ngom village as the livestock and grains market regain it’s loss glory.
She also thanked the donor agencies development and humanitarian partners for restructuring the village as well as the Borno state government for providing other basic amenities under the coordination of the UNDP and supervision of the Ministry of RRR
The minister said federal government will continue to support the reconstruction, rehabilitation and resettlement process of the north east region, stressing that, federal government was determined to support Borno state government to achieve its RRR program.