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FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA:
DISPLACED WOMEN, CHILDREN DENIED RIGHT TO FOOD

Update info:
6 Jun 2018
Country:
FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA
Subject:
Hundreds of internally displaced women (known as the Knifar movement) and their children
Gender m/f: both
Period:
29 Jun 2018
Distribution date:
6 Jun 2018
UA No:
102/2018

Approximately 230 internally displaced women (known as the Knifar movement) and their children have not had food delivered to the internally displaced (IDP) camp since 18 April. Their food supply has run out. This denial of food to the women and their children is seen as an attempt by the authorities to force them to go back to their former homes where they would risk facing various human rights violations.

A group of approximately 230 internally displaced women (known as the Knifar movement) and their children risk starvation as authorities have stopped supplying food to the IDP camp they have been living in since 2017. Food was last delivered to the camp on 18 April and it did not even last one week. There has been no communication from camp authorities on why the supply stopped. Women and their children have been left with no alternative means of getting food.

Earlier that day, officials of the State Emergency Management Agency in Borno state (BOSEMA), North east Nigeria told the women that they would no longer receive food assistance. The BOSEMA officials had also told the women and their children that they would have to return to their former homes in Bama. The women expressed their desire to remain at the IDP camp in the state capital of Maiduguri as it is relatively safer than Bama and it also allows them the chance to continue their fight for justice. The officials have allowed them to stay at the IDP camp.

However, Amnesty International is deeply concerned that the government’s decision to discontinue food supply to the internally displaced women and their children is a strategy to silence the women as a first step in the plan to return the women and their children back home and to also keep the women from continuing to seek justice for their husbands. Since 2017, when the women moved to the camp, they have been calling for the release of their husbands who are unlawfully detained by the Nigerian military in the context of the government operations against the Boko Haram. The men were detained in mass arrests as they fled their homes during attacks by Boko Haram The authorities have yet to provide any proof that the men are involved with Boko Haram or even where they are detained.

Most of the internally displaced women are from towns and villages in Bama region that fell under the control of Boko Haram during violent attacks in 2014.

Since 2014, more than two million men, women and children have been displaced by the armed conflict in north-east Nigeria. A group of internally displaced women known as the Knifar movement, have since 2017 consistently called for justice for the unlawful arrest and detention of their husbands.

Take action

Please write immediately in English or your own language:

  • Urging the government to respect the right to food and halt any plans to cut off food aid to the hundreds of internally displaced women known as the Knifar movement and their children;
  • Calling on them, in line with international human rights and humanitarian law, to stop any plans to forcibly return the internally displaced women and their children to Bama area where they would face insecurity and risk human rights violations including restrictions on their right to movement.

PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 29 JUNE 2018 TO:
Vice President of Nigeria
Prof. Yemi Osinbajo
Office of the Vice President
Nigerian Presidential Complex
Aso Rock Presidential Villa Abuja,
Federal Capital Territory Nigeria
Twitter:@ProfOsinbajo
Salutation: Your Excellency

The Zonal Coordinator
National Emergency Management Agency, North East Zonal Office

Alhaji Muhammed Kanar.
Medical Store Premises, Baga Road off
Auno Street, Maiduguri, Borno State.
Email: mohammed.kanar@nema.gov.ng
Salutation: Dear Sir

And copies to:
The Director General
National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA)
Engr Mustapha Maihaja
No. 8, Adetokunbo Ademola Crescent Maitama, Abuja,
Nigeria
Twitter: @NEMANigeria
Salutation: Dear Sir

Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country.

Please check with your section office if sending appeals after the above date.