Bakassi IDPs lament struggle for relief – calls for support

Internally Displaced Persons in the Ikot Eyo Edem community of Bakassi Local Government Area in Cross River State have raised allegations against the locals for encroaching on their settlement. They claim to face difficulties in receiving aid, whether in the form of relief supplies or financial assistance, from governmental bodies, organizations, or international donors, which has left them in dire straits.

In a plea directed to the Federal Government and signed by Chief Etim Okon Ene, the leader of the IDP camp in Bakassi, they express their distressing living conditions and warn of the potential for an epidemic outbreak if their situation remains unaddressed. Furthermore, Ene mentions that their predicament worsened when security forces recently conducted a search operation in the camp, suspecting it had become a haven for criminals.

Ene accuses the native community of seizing the opportunity during the EndSARS protest to steal their belongings. He asserts that their steadfastness in ensuring a fair distribution of relief supplies led the host community to devise ways to make their stay uncomfortable.

They implore the Federal Government to assist them by providing farming tools to enable self-sufficiency since their primary livelihood, fishing, has become inaccessible due to their displacement. Additionally, they request increased security measures in the camp, including solar-powered streetlights, security posts, and surveillance.

Edited by Damilola Adeleke

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