From LAIDE AKINBOADE
The United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Myrta Kaulard, has joined other world leaders in condemning the twin suicide attacks in Damboa, Borno State, that left dozens of people dead and scores injured.
Samantha Newport, Head, Communications Unit, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, Nigeria, said this in a statement in Abuja.
She said the attack was one of the deadliest attacks the town had witnessed.
The statement reads: “Our deepest condolences go to the families of the victims in Damboa and to the Government and people of Nigeria. We wish the injured a speedy recovery.
“Civilians consistently bear the brunt of the conflict and over 200 women, children and men have now been killed in indiscriminate attacks in the north-east since the beginning of the year.
“This is including in the town of Mubi last month in Adamawa State. I urge the Government of Nigeria to further step up protection of people.”
She said UN and the International Committee of the Red Cross on Sunday air-lifted by helicopter, 11 of the critically wounded from Damboa to Maiduguri.
She said this was to facilitate emergency medical treatment, in support of the state authorities.
”Damboa town lies about 90 kilometers south-west of Borno capital Maiduguri. The Local Government Authority of Damboa currently hosts over 90,000 internally displaced people, 18,000 of which live in Damboa town in five camps for internally displaced people.
”The LGA is one of the areas in Borno that hosts the highest number of internally displaced people,” she said.
Kaulard said some 20 humanitarian organisations provided life-saving assistance to the vulnerable women, children and men in Damboa, including food, shelter, medical services, clean water and sanitation on a daily basis.
According to her, the town last witnessed an attack by a non-state armed group in July 2016.
”The town was also taken over by a non-state armed group in mid-2014 and subsequently recaptured by the Nigerian military a few months later.
”Humanitarian access outside of Damboa town in the rest of Damboa Local Government Area remains limited due to ongoing hostilities and lack of safety assurances,” she said.