IDPs will return home next year – Shettima


Borno State Governor, Kashim Shetima, on Tuesday said arrangements will be put in place to ensure that all Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) return home latest by May 29 next year.

Many Nigerians have been displaced from their homes due to insurgency in the Northeast.

Briefing State House correspondents at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, the governor noted that due to insurgency, the population of Maiduguri has increased from two million to three million.

He spoke with journalists in the company of governors Aminu Tambuwal (Sokoto) Mohammed Abubakar (Bauchi) and Abdulfatah Ahmed (Kwara) after selected Northern governors met with United States Secretary of State, John Kerry, at the State House.

He said: “On the issue of resettlement, the bulk of IDPs are from Borno State‎, the population of Maiduguri has swelled from two million to three million now. And where there is a will there is always a way. Believe me by May 29 next year we want our people to go back to their homes.

“We are going to marshal whatever resources with or without international support to see that we have restored the dignity of our people. We cannot wait for eternity for manna from heaven from international community to develop our communities.

“The biggest IDP camp is in Kenya, the Kenyan government has finally summoned the political courage to close down that camp. In most of the camps there is challenge of early marriages, child prostitution, drug abuse, and gangsterism, among others.

“The sooner we close them down the better. In any case no matter how good life is in the IDP camp there is no place like home. We want to restore their dignity. We are commencing the rebuilding of Bama. By May 29 next year, believe me, you will hear very little about IDP camp. We will adhere to the Kampala convention, but we will not compel anyone in IDP camps to go back to their community. But you know our people, they carry their poverty with dignity and they are willing to go back home.”