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SEMA: We’ve 14 IDP camps in Benue — three more will be inaugurated in 2024

SEMA: We’ve 14 IDP camps in Benue — three more will be inaugurated in 2024
December 15
16:10 2023

The Benue State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) says there are 14 camps in five LGAs housing internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the state.

Speaking during an interview on Friday,  James Iorpuu, executive secretary of SEMA, said the camps are in Makurdi, Guma, Gwer West, Logo, and Agatu LGAs.

Iorpuu said the state used to have only six IDP camps sheltering over two million persons, adding that the current administration identified and rehabilitated the centres and increased the number to 14.

He said the state government is planning to increase the camps from 14 to 17, noting that three more centres would be inaugurated next year.


“Before we came into office, we had six IDP camps in Benue but, as we speak, we have 14 camps,” NAN quoted Iorpuu as saying.

“These are not new camps; they were existing, but the previous government did not recognise them. We have recognised and activated them.

“Before now, there were stories that food and other materials from the government were not getting to the IDPs.


“But that has changed; if you go to Benue now, the IDPs are happy. Some of them are not willing to go back to their homes because the government is taking good care of them.”

The SEMA executive secretary said his office has divided the displaced persons into groups and has recruited workers who have been deployed to manage the camps appropriately.

“We have even improved on water and sanitation activities. We are engaging Doctors Without Borders, the United High Commission for Refugees and the Victims Support Fund,” he said.

“These are the major development partners that have been helping us. They developed shelters for the camps, built sanitary facilities and other things.


“The exact and verifiable data of persons in the camps is being compiled. We don’t want to continue to use the speculative figures we inherited from the last administration.

“The inherited figure we have been using is 2,146,000 displaced persons but, as I said, this figure is not verifiable, and we are working towards getting something accurate.

“To get the exact data, we invited the International Organisation on Migration (IOM), which is currently undertaking the biometric capture of IDPs.

“When they are through with the exercise, we shall ascertain the correct number of people displaced.”


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