An IDP and her son looking at valuables destroyed by fire. This open space use to be their shelter. Photo: Dauda Iliya
The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) says 121 households have been affected by a fire at Muna El-Badawi IDP camp in Jere local Government area of Borno State.
The North-East Zonal Coordinator of NEMA, Alhaji Usman Aji confirmed the incident to Radio Nigeria in Maiduguri.
Muna El-Badawi camp has a population of more than 50,000 displaced persons from nine local government areas of the state.
The Camp has recorded several fire outbreaks. For instance, in 2022 alone, five incidences were reported and in most cases the cause of the blaze was “not known”.
Alhaji Aji said preliminary investigation revealed that the fire, which resulted from a cooking device, actually started in one of the makeshift houses.
According to him, the number of victims affected was “not beyond the capacity of the state and local governments”, stating that NEMA has been providing monthly intervention to IDPs in the camp.
“We use to go and sensitise those in the camp that they should be very careful with fire, especially in this season. Much is been said to them about how to take care of fire in their camp but unfortunately each year, there is fire in that camp,” Alhaji Aji said.
Speaking to Radio Nigeria, the camp manager, Abubakar Uba, and the public relations officer of the State Emergency Management Agency, Abdullahi Umar, insisted that no life was lost, although they conceded that two people sustained injuries.
Muna camp Chairman, Abubakar Gawa, who is also a victim, and one Mohammed Abba, said they lost all their valuables in the fire. They called on the state government and other humanitarian agencies to come to their aid.
Reporting by Dauda Iliya; Editing by Oluwaseyi Ajibade and Tony Okerafor