By Oluwafunke Isola
Dangote Foundation says it has donated food items and relief materials worth N1.3 billion to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and returnees in the North-East within the past five months.
Ms Zouera Youssoufou, Dangote Foundation Chief Executive, said in a statement that about 106 trailer loads of basic necessities were provided in its fresh humanitarian intervention which began in July.
The statement quoted Youssoufou as saying at the flag off of food distribution in Yobe State that IDP camps in 32 communities benefitted from the donation.
She expressed the Foundation’s commitment to peace and security in all parts of the country, saying that “injury to one is injury to all, because we are our brother’s keeper.”
“Dangote Foundation is committed to alleviating poverty and the suffering of vulnerable people in the society through intervention initiatives that impacts lives positively and engenders socio-economic development.
”We are committed to reducing the number of lives lost to malnutrition, especially among children, and providing intervention in the focus areas of education, health and economic empowerment,” Youssoufou said.
She disclosed that the Foundation would commit additional N2 billion to support government’s reconstruction efforts of the North East.
Youssoufou appealed to individuals and organisations to assist in ameliorating starvation and hardship among IDPs in the country.
Alhaji Abubakar Aliyu, Yobe State Deputy Governor, said that the intervention was apt, adding that the gesture would assist returnees in rebuilding their lives, pending when they would earn livelihood.
He appealed for more humanitarian efforts to address the challenges of rehabilitation, reconstruction, reintegration and peace building in the second most affected state by insurgency.
Alhaji Kijari Batarama, Chairman, Gubja Local Government, lauded the donation, stating that return of peace to some areas had led to farming activities and contributed to attainment of food security.
According to the council chairman, the returnees had increased school enrolment to 6,819 pupils across 10 communities.
Batarama then called for more support to help transform lives of returnees and restore affected villages to prosperity.