A UN official based in Nigeria said about 1.2 million people are at risk of explosive mines in three northeastern states of the country.
Speaking at a gathering for the 2022 International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action Monday in Abuja, the Nigerian capital, the United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria Matthias Schmale said that 1.2 million people needed life-saving assistance in the three states, namely Borno, Yobe, and Adamawa.
He told the gathering that explosive ordnance in their different forms continued to represent immediate, grave, and additional threat to already suffering populations in those areas. The United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) collated 1,532 incidents in the region involving explosive hazards from January 2016 to January 2022 involving more than 10,000 causalities.
The UN was pursuing efforts to deliver life-saving assistance to affected populations and encourage the development of a nationally-owned and coordinated response to reinforce Nigerian capacities. UNMAS has conducted Improvised Explosives Device disposal training for 26 Explosives Ordnance Department operators of the Nigeria Police Force in Borno in order to reinforce national capacities for explosive ordnance management, said the official.
Schmale added that UNMAS would give its fullest support to Nigeria to develop and execute the national mine action strategy to enable humanitarian mine action to work. Enditem