Insecurity: Nigerians Now Refugees in Chad

Thousands of Nigerians have fled their homes in Kolikolia, Borno State to evade attacks from the dreaded Boko Haram sect.

The refugees were said to have arrived the uninhabited Island of Choua in Lake Chad. The Island, which lies in the Chadian waters, is about four kilometres from an intersection that borders Chad, Nigeria and Niger Republics.

Speaking at a press briefing held on August 5, 2014, at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, spokesman of United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, UNHCR, Ariane Rummery said, ‘‘refugees reported that they fled violence and attacks on their village that resulted in the destruction of their homes and food reserves.’’

Rummery also revealed that those seeking asylum on the Island were mostly women and children who are ‘‘in urgent need of food, water, shelter and medical care.’’

According to the UN agency, Chadian authorities have agreed to relocate the refugees to Ngouboua, which is about 30 kilometres from the border, where some Nigerian and Chadian refugees alike, are already being hosted by locals.

The Chadian authorities have equally provided two helicopters to effect the relocation of the refugees from Choua to Ngouboua.

Alongside its partners like the World Food Programme, United Nations Children’s Fund, World Health Organisation, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, United Nations Population Fund, the UNHCR has promised to provide the refugees with humanitarian aid-household items such as high-energy biscuits, water purification kits, mosquito nets, communal tents, sleeping mats and other packages.

An office is also to be established by the group in the Lake Chad area to further monitor the situation and effectively give assistance to refugees.

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