The United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund UNICEF has stated that four Local Government Areas in Borno State North-Eastern Nigeria, were completely inaccessible for humanitarian assistance as a result of activities of terrorists in the affected places.
It said attacks and armed clashes remained consistently high across the state, hence hampering its efforts to reach women and children in need of urgent help.
The position of the UN agency is coming against the backdrop of the capture, last week, of Marte LGA by terrorist group, however military authorities have denied that Marte LGA was under the control of insurgents.
However, in its latest report entitled “Situation Overview and Humanitarian Needs”, UNICEF said Marte, which the insurgents captured last week and three other local councils notably Abadam, Guzamala, and Kukawa were completely inaccessible owing to insurgent attacks.
The security situation remains volatile, with a significant impact on humanitarian access. Four LGAs,Abadam, Guzamala, Kukawa, and Marteremain completely inaccessible to humanitarian actors while access to Kala Balge LGA Rann remains severely constrained.
The UN agency said, many other LGAs are only partially accessible, and the number of armed clashes and attacks remains consistently high across the state.
A marked deterioration in road security has further increased humanitarian actors’ reliance on UNHAS helicopters to reach many locations, including Monguno, where there are significant humanitarian needs following the arrival of nearly 15,000 newly displaced persons over the past six months.
Humanitarian actors consider it unlikely that the security situation in the majority of LGAs of Borno State will allow for any population return in the near future, either of IDPs or refugees.
The urgency of overcrowding and congestion of camps is rising as the rainy season approaches, particularly in Maiduguri and Monguno where more than 20,000 people are still sleeping under open skies.
The report said, negotiations with civilian and military authorities have resulted in the promise new land in Monguno, for which humanitarian partners are still awaiting final approval.
In the meantime, no concrete progress has been made on the allocation of new land in Maiduguri, Bama, Pulka and other locations.
Efforts made to get the response of the Nigerian Army’s Spokesman, Col. Sagir Musa, were not successful as his phone was switched off at the time of filing this report.