UN Warns Of Looming Humanitarian Crisis In Borno State

Toby Lanzer
Toby Lanzer

The United Nations’ Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs has warned that a “deeper and broader suffering, unlike anything seen to date” is looming in Nigeria’s north-east if authorities do not act.

This is contained in a Statement released by Toby Lanzer, the United Nations Assistant Secretary-General & Regional Humanitarian Coordinator, in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.

Lanzer commended the security authorities for their efforts so far which has resulted in improved access to various communities in the state by road, enabling aid agencies to reach the people more easily.

He also said he was held spell-bound by the energy and resilience of the people, expressing optimism that , “if the situation were entirely stable and state and private sector investments in the economy were taking place, Borno and Yobe would be thriving.”

He however added that despite the remarkable improvement in security and access over the past months, Boko Haram continues to sow instability and threaten the lives and livelihoods of millions of people in the Northeast, 90 percent of whom used to rely on farming, fishing and livestock.

“As of today, 4.4 million people are severely food insecure across Nigeria’s north-east; and, listening to girls, boys, members of the youth and elders in Dikwa and Monguno this week highlighted the untold suffering they have endured over the past three years,” Lanzer stated.



    He pledged the commitment of the UN to help in averting the looming humanitarian crisis in the region, saying the body is willing to inject $200 million in order to make life better for the people; but added that the Nigerian authorities have to lead the way and show greater commitment to this effect.

    He said: “The United Nations and its partners have the experience needed to work with the authorities in support of people struck by the violence. We can provide food, clothing and water. We can help get children back into a class room,

    “And, together with the authorities, we can address the underlying issues that punctuate this crisis. We stand ready to act and scale up our response. With an injection of US$ 200 million from the international donor community, we can feed 431,000 people to keep them alive; resolve the severe acute malnutrition of 50,000 children so that they see their next birthday; and, help ensure that girls and women are protected.”

    “But time is running out for the poorest and most rural of people in the country’s north-east. A failure to act now will result in deeper and broader suffering, unlike anything seen to date in Nigeria’s north-east and a steeper bill for all concerned to alleviate suffering and stabilize the situation,” Lanzer concluded.


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    1. I feel sorry for Nigerians in the NE, thinking about it alone imprint one with pain not to talk of the people whose lives are been threaten with death and starvation. I hope our brothers in other regions will learn from this…


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