Nigeria Currently Records 3.2m IDPs, 84,000 Refugees – UNHCR

Nigeria Currently Records 3.2m IDPs, 84,000 Refugees – UNHCR

By Blessing Otobong-Gabriel

The UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR has said that Nigeria currently has 3.2 million internally displaced persons and 84,000 refugees that most of the refugees in Nigeria come predominately from SW and NW regions of Cameroon affected by the conflict between the government and activists calling for session of Anglophone regions. 

UNHCR Representative to Nigeria, Ms. Chansa Kapaya disclosed this to mark World Refugee Day that the day is an international day designated by the United Nations and it falls on June 20 every year.

It is a day set aside to honour the courage, strength, resilience and contributions of the millions of people around the world who have been forced to flee their homes due to violence, war or persecution.

It’s a day to remember that with help from welcoming communities and neighbors, people can rebuild their lives and their networks, and even thrive.

UNHCR representative stated that UNHCR’s global trends report, released on 16th June 2022 states that 89.3 million were forcibly displaced at the end of 2021 worldwide, 27.1 million were refugees, 53.2 million IDPs, and 4.6 million were asylum seekers.

According to her, the 77,000 Cameroonians are hosted mainly in 4 States in the South; in Cross River, Taraba, Benue and Akwa Ibom they began arriving as of 2017 to date.

Nigeria also hosts an additional 6,900 refugees and asylum seekers from other countries, but predominately from Syria, Niger, DRC, Turkey CAR, Lebanon mainly settled in urban cities in Nigeria, like Lagos, Abuja, Kano, Ogun.

Ms Chansa noted that Nigeria is party to the 1951 United Nations Convention relating to the status of refugees and its 1967 protocol as well as the 1969 OAU Convention and other regional instruments which mandate signatories to provide protection to a person who seeks refuge(asylum) owing to a well-founded fear for his life and to seek durable solutions to their problems.

Nigeria has fulfilled her international obligations and has also reaffirmed her commitment and exceptional solidarity with refugees by her commitment to the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR) principles of refugee inclusion and responsibility sharing.

She said this year, with millions of Ukrainians displaced as well as other new displacements elsewhere, the total forced displacement now exceeds a grim milestone of 100 million.

This is the number of people forced to flee conflict, war, persecution, and human rights violations or events severely disturbing public order.

This means one in every 78 people on earth has been forced to flee – this is a dramatic milestone that few would have expected a decade ago.”This year alone, the war in Ukraine has displaced 7.1 million people within the country and more than 6.8 million people have fled across the country’s borders as refugees.

In addition, there is renewed violence in places where protracted crises continue, such as Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Myanmar, Nigeria, Afghanistan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Also speaking, High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said eorld refugee Day is intended to be a celebration of the human spirit and of the fortitude of the millions of people who ­ despite being displaced and dispossessed – relentlessly strive to improve their lives and those of their families and communities. 

Grandi said, Yet this year we are again reminded of the work we have ahead of us as world leaders remain unable or unwilling to resolve conflicts. We at UNHCR recently announced the seemingly unimaginable: 100 million people have now been forced to flee their homes.

The war in Ukraine, as well as new or continuing emergencies in places such as Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Myanmar, Nigeria, Afghanistan, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, have all contributed to this staggering figure. 

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Chansa KapayInternally displaced personsrefugees

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