The Internally Displaced Persons ( IDPs) taking refuge at the Bakassi IDPs in Maiduguri have, yesterday, cried out to the government and relevant agencies to save them from starvation due to poor feeding.
The IDPs, who gathered for the medical outreach embarked on by the Orji Uzor Kalu Foundation in collaboration with the Presidential Committee On the Northeast Initiative (PCNI) said they have resorted to menial jobs and begging to feed their children and settle other bills.
The two-day free medical outreach, which began on Wednesday at the camp, saw over 1000 female IDPs with toilet infections as well as those with diabetes and chronic wounds receiving drugs and treatments from the foundation.
Hauwa Adamu, mother of eight children, whose father was recently killed in Bubaya community in Gwoza local government area, decried the inadequate feeding in the camp and said: “we thank Orji Uzor Kalu foundation for the free medical services. We urge them to distribute the drugs to us with their hands otherwise the drugs will go missing the moment they leave the camp.
“We are also begging the federal government to improve on our feeding. For the past two months, no food has been distributed to us by either State Emergency Management Agency or National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA). Most of us have resorted to self-help for the survival of our households.”
Corroborating her, Asta Baya, an IDP from Monguno local government area, who lives in the camp with her nine children and husband said they had, on several occasions, encountered boko haram terrorists, who chased them while farming or searching for firewood to sell from bush some killometers away from the camp.
“Some of us do go out in the morning to work for some people in the town while others go to beg and return in the evening to ensure they have something to eat. We are calling on government to scale up the feeding pattern in the camp, which has not been on regular basis.
LEADERSHIP Weekend however reports that majority of the women who came for the medical outreach had infections, which the the medical experts, brought by the Orji Uzor Kalu foundation, attributed to the use of one toilet facility by over a hundred female IDPs notwithstanding the fact that a female body system is highly sensitive.
It was also gathered from some camp officials, who don’t want their names in print, mentioned that NEMA is saddled with the responsibility of providing foodstuffs to the IDPs while SEMA provides the condiments.
Meanwhile , speaking to the press, the executive secretary, Orji Uzor Kalu Foundation, Rev Jemaimah Ola Kalu, said the likelihood of such diseases in the camp due to the use of one facility by large number of IDPs made the foundation focus on infectious disease treatment.
“We are here to enlighten the people on health issues and give treatment to the sick ones among them. We treated those with diabetes as well as those with chronic wounds. We have also distributed antibiotics to the women among the IDPs that contracted toilet infections. 500 women were treated of toilet infections while 500 others received treatment on diabetes and chronic wounds.
“It is very rampant to see women contract infections where one facility such as toilet is put in use for large number of people. We will ensure that everyone of them with any kind of infection is treated and drug administered,” Rev Kalu said.
In his remarks, the representative of PCNI, Ibrahim Baba Machina, thanked Orji Uzor Kalu foundation for caring for the health needs of the IDP, noting that the foundation has been supporting PCNI in addressing the challenges of emergency situation throughout the country.