Internal displaced persons and their information needs.

Author:Sambo, Atanda Saliu

Borno State is a state in north-eastern Nigeria. Its capital is Maiduguri. The state was formed in 1976 from the split of the North-Eastern State. Until 1991 it contained what is now Yobe State. Borno has 27 local governments such as: Askira/Uba, Bama, Bayo, Biu, Chibok, Damboa, Dikwa, Abadam, Gubio, Guzamala, Gwoza, Hawul, Jere, Kaga, Kala/Balge, Konduga, Kukawa, Kwayakusar, Mafa, Magumeri, Maiduguri, Marte, Mobbar, Monguno, Ngala, Nganzai, and Shani. The Borno state government has revealed that terrorist group; Boko Haram controls 20 out of the 27 local government areas in Borno state over the last five years. Besides, The Nation, February, (2016), reports that, only Maiduguri Metropolitan, Jere, Konduga, Kaga, Bayo, Kwayakusar and Biu local government areas remain in government hands. Therefore, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), North-East Coordinator of the agency, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday, (2016) in Maiduguri reported that, 16 of the camps were located in Maiduguri, while 16 were cited in some local government areas. He said the number of displaced persons in the camps in Maiduguri ranged from 120, 000 to 130, 000 "We still have 32 camps in the state; 16 of the camps are in Maiduguri, while 16 others are in the local government areas, which we call satellite camps. "The number of IDPs in the 16 camps in Maiduguri fluctuates between 120,000 and 130,000; sometimes it is 120,000, sometimes it is less depending on the situation," According to him. He said the number of IDPs in satellite camps was 400,000, adding that no fewer than 1.2 million IDPs were also staying with relatives in the communities. He emphasised that the agency had been striving hard to provide welfare for the IDPs wherever they were located. A total of 1,934,765 displaced persons, IDPs, are currently living in formal camps, host communities and satellite camps in liberated communities as a result of insurgency in North Eastern States of Borno, Yobe, Taraba, Gombe, Bauchi and Adamawa states. This was disclosed by the Yola Camp Coordinator, Saad Bello, who, on behalf of the Director General of NEMA, Muhammad Sani Sidi, took the United States Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, round the facilities at Malkohi IDP Camp in Yola, Adamawa State at the weekend. He said there were 32 formal camps in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa States with a total of 189,783 IDPs. Borno has 19 camps with 150, 858 IDPs; Yobe has 9 camps with 31, 988 IDPs and Adamawa 4 camps with 6, 937 IDPs. The Camp Coordinator added that there were 14 satellite camps in liberated communities, mainly in Borno State with 216,184 IDPs. The camps with the highest population are Ngala with 70,505; Dikwa 53,636; Bama 27, 000, Damboa/Sabon Gari 25,311 and Chibok; 37,798. Mr Saad said host communities in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states have a total of 1,391,613 IDPs. Borno state has the highest with 1, 158, 362; Adamawa 125, 689 and Yobe 107, 562.

Therefore, Nigeria has been battling helplessly with insurgency perpetrated by the Boko Haram terrorist group. Boko Haram is predominant in the North Eastern part of Nigeria in states like Borno, Yobe and Adamawa. They have in the last half a decade or so, become the most dangerous insurgent group that Nigerians have witnessed. Their central philosophy is "Western education is forbidden". They are known to devastatingly attack churches, mosques, schools, police stations and government, private and public owned facilities with a kind of guerrilla warfare tactics. The hazardous undertakings of Boko Haram insurgency have generated a huge upsurge of displacement in the North Eastern part of Nigeria. Internally displaced person's plight is more worrying and hazardous in Nigeria. Over the years, the growing number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Nigeria is becoming alarming According to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-Moon (2014), Displacement remains arguably the most significant humanitarian challenge facing the world of the 33.3 million IDPs in the world; Sub-Saharan Africa hosts 15 million, with an increase of 7.5% between 2013 and 2014. Therefore, this study is concerning about internal displacement persons in Nigeria with special interest on Borno camp.

Statement of the Problem

The activity of the much dreaded Boko Haram sect has tampered with the peace and harmony of Nigeria as a nation and Borno in particular. The victims of war, battle, clash or conflict are not just those who die in the battle, those who live to tell the story live with pains and memories that may never make them remain the same again. Above and beyond, the displaced persons at the camps have seen a lighter shade of death with the hardship and sufferings they have endured in recent times. Some of them are lost and have no suspicion of the where about of their loved ones. Living in the IDP camp is enough reason for them to be unhappy and upset when they used to be major business owners and land owners. This study, however, intends to find out the information needs of the IDPs at Maiduguri camps in Borno State. It is against this backdrop, that these studies evaluate information needs of the IDPs, to what use the IDPs put the information they obtained, and what is the condition of the IDPs camps in Maiduguri as well as what are the challenges that IDPs encounter in information seeking.? These are the questions to which this study intends to answers.

Objectives of the Study

This study sought to establish ways of enhancing the information- seeking behaviour of the IDPs. To attain this goal, the study specified the following objectives:

* To ascertain their information needs of the IDPs

* To know the use they put the information obtained.

* To examine the condition of the IDPs camps

* To establish the problems that the IDPs encounter in information seeking Research Questions

For the purpose of this research, the following questions have been formulated:

* What are the information needs of the IDPs in the camp?

* To what use the IDPs put the information they obtained?

* What is the condition of the IDPs camps in Borno?

* What are the challenges that IDPsencounter in information seeking?

Literature Review

Uncountable peoples have lost their life, exposed to different abuse; abandon their...

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