While addressing an audience with a delegation from the International Rescue Committee (IRC) led by former British Foreign Minister, Mr. David Miliband, President Buhari stated that the Buhari-led government is doing everything possible to hasten the return and resettlement of more than two million displaced people back into towns, villages and communities.
The President further told Mr. Miliband and his delegation that the Federal Government appreciates the help of the IRC and other local and international non-governmental organizations for the rehabilitation of internally displaced persons.
According to President Buhari;
In 2016, the return of the IDPs will start in earnest. They will return to their communities to meet destroyed schools and other infrastructure which have to be rebuilt.
With agriculture being moribund in the region in the last two years without cropping, hunger is already manifest. We will welcome all the help we can get to assist the returnees.
In response to the request made by Mr. Miliband which asks the Federal Government’s priorities as to the nature of assistance required for the displaced persons, the President stated that IRC and other NGOs could help the government in the areas of agricultural inputs, health, nutrition, water and sanitation as these areas need urgent attention in rehabilitating the displaced persons in Nigeria.
The president further urged the IRC and other international agencies to work with the Presidential Committee on the North-East and the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) which, in his word were already working relentlessly in providing for the said displaced persons and also to restore some basic infrastructure in communities affected by terrorism and insurgency.
Mr. Miliband promised the President Buhari that the IRC will step up its works taking place in Nigeria which has assisted over 350,000 displaced persons, mostly in Adamawa and Borno states.
He further asked the government to improve and heighten security presence in all the towns that have been recovered from the terror group since most displaced persons returning to their homes are still afraid for their safety on their return home.