From Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
Internally Displaced Persons, (IDPs) at the Abagana IDP camp, have appealed to the state and federal government to establish a police post close to the camp to ensure security of their lives.
The IDPs lamented that their lives are no longer safe in the camp as a result of Herdsmen attacks that keep getting closer to them by the day.
The manager of Abagana IDP camp, Mr. Iliagh Terhile in a chat with newsmen at the camp premises in Makurdi on Tuesday, recalled the last attack on the camp community in which seven people were killed by suspected armed herdsmen a few months ago.
He said after the incident, some of the IDPs fled the camp to other places while those of them who remained behind can no longer sleep with their two eyes closed for fear of attacks.
Terhile said even those who initially ran away from the camp were forced to return to the camp as a result of hunger and lack of accommodation for them in town.
“The security of the camp is not guaranteed. We want government to provide security outfit close to the camp to be able to respond to any emergency or eventualities.
“I sleep here in the camp but we have not been sleeping with our two eyes closed. When Herdsmen attacked this area some months back and some of our IDPs were also killed, some had to flee but after a while, returned to camp because they have nothing to eat out there,” he said.
On whether the camp would be closed anytime soon, Terhile said the security of those ancestral homes and the psychology of the IDPs must first be put into consideration before such step can be taken.
“The issue of camp closure is a complex one. The security of the IDPs is not guaranteed now if they return to their ancestral home. If they must return, security measures must be put in place at their various communities. They also have to be helped with finance and seedlings else, you have just succeeded in breeding criminals.
“The psychological wellbeing of the IDPs should also be ascertained and managed before they are reintegrated into the society to avoid enemity and violence among them,” he said.