The Federal Government is going to establish a Presidential Humanitarian and Poverty Alleviation Trust Fund, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Dr Betta Edu, announced on Thursday in Abuja.
Edu, who spoke at the headquarters of the humanitarian ministry, while playing host the Country Director, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Jeremie Zoungrana, said the fund was part of measures to lift over 133 million Nigerians out of poverty and other humanitarian crises.
The minister also solicited the foundation’s technical and financial support towards achieving the task of lifting millions of Nigerians out of poverty and tackling the myriad of humanitarian crises across the country.
She said, “We have a huge task on our hands. As we speak now, over 16 million Nigerians are affected by humanitarian crises, either man-made or natural disasters. Of course, security issues and pockets of unrest in different areas have not made this any better.
“Other natural disasters like the flooding, which we are presently going through, and the opening of a dam in another country, which will have its effect on Nigeria, are another call for attention to ensure that people are catered for.
“And then we have these unrests in all the neighbouring countries—in Cameroon, in the southern part of Cameroon—that have over 46,000 refugees coming into Nigeria. So there are over 36,000 in Cross River. We have a whole lot in Taraba and Benue along that border.”
She told her guests that the government was also dealing with other crises in Niger, with people coming to Sokoto, Kano, Katsina, among others.”