More than 2,000 IDPs of Guzamala extraction living in Bakassi IDP Camp in Maiduguri today Tuesday 19 June 2018 commenced movement to return to their original homeland in Guzamala Local Government Area of Borno state.
The IDPs, numbering about 2,043 individuals, making up 378 households, constitute the first batch of IDPs who willingly expressed the desire to return to their communities to resettle and resume their lives and traditional occupations of farming and fishing.
Speaking during the flag off of the movement at the Bakassi IDP Camp, Theatre Commander Operation Lafiya Dole Maj Gen Rogers Nicholas stated that the earnest desire of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Yusuf Buratai has been to ensure that IDPs who are willing, return home to begin a normal life.
He noted that the modalities to return the IDPs home were jointly worked out by the Theatre Command, the Borno State Government, and the Guzamala Local Authorities.
General Nicholas added that the military has reinforced security in the locality and that the traditional farm clearing (sharandaji) to declare the farming season open had earlier been conducted in Gudumbali.
He assured the returnee IDPs of adequate protection while they resettle, adding, that Operation Last Hold has been inaugurated in the theatre to operationally cover the locality and other communities.
The Theatre Commander also urged well meaning Nigerians and NGOs to support returnee IDPs with farming implements and other relief materials to enable them settle back quickly into their respective communities.
While expressing gratitude to the military, the Borno state Commissioner for Reconstruction, Rehabilitation & Resettlement, Prof Babagana Umara, stated that the IDPs’ resolve to return home is a welcome development, & assured them of the support of the Borno State Government as they return.