Diversion of relief materials: Gov. Zulum administers oath on self, officials, IDPs

Prof. Umara-Zulum Governor of Borno State.

Gov. Babagana Zulum of Borno on Monday administered oath on officials in charge of distribution of food items to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) to avert diversion.

Malam Isa Gusau, the Special Adviser on Public Relations and Strategy to Gov. Babgana Zulum, disclosed this in a statement in Maiduguri.

Gusau said Zulum, who was on a visit to Monguno, personally coordinated and supervised the distribution of the items to ensure sanity

He listed the food items to include rice, pasta, cooking oil, seasoning and condiments, which were distributed to 190,045 persons displaced by insurgents in Monguno town of Monguno Local Government Area in Borno.

Gusau disclosed that the governor swore by the Holy Qur’an and directed officials of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), humanitarian workers and displaced persons,to do same.

He explained that the oath was imperative to warn the officials, aid workers and displaced persons,to refrain from diversion of the commodities.

“In Zulum’s presence, a copy of the Qur’an was raised the traditional way seeking the wrath of God against the governor, humanitarian workers, NEMA, SEMA and other government officials, who divert food and other relief materials meant for the welfare of displaced persons. ‎

“The oath was also administered on displaced persons who have the habit of collecting multiple rations of food and sell in the markets, depriving fellow displaced persons of food.

“Until the introduction of oath, humanitarian workers have had to contend with problems of food vending by hundreds of displaced persons who collect multiple allocations.

“There were also allegations of dubious collaboration between some humanitarian workers and displaced persons,” Gusau said.

He added that many of the displaced persons, who had earlier received their ratio and re-joined queues to collect for the second time, left on learning they would be administered oath using the Holy book.

According to him, food items are provided to deserving displaced households on ration that could last them for a period of two or more weeks.

The beneficiaries had fled their homes in Kukawa, Marte, Mobbar and Guzamala and were currently in 16 IDPs’ camps in Monguno town, headquarters of Monguno local government area.