Cameroonian Refugees: UNHCR lauds Nigeria, seeks international support

Cameroonian Refugees: UNHCR lauds Nigeria, seeks international support

The United Nations High Commission for Refugees, (UNHCR) has commended Nigeria’s support for Cameroonian refugees in the country saying; “It is on its way to becoming a champion in implementing the Global Compact on Refugees.

The UNHCR’s Representative in Nigeria, Chansa Kapaya also urged international partners to support the Cameroonian refugees in the country.

The Agency said the call for additional support became necessary because Nigeria exceeded the 70,000 mark, with women and children constituting 80%.

“Nigeria needs support.

The most pressing needs of Cameroonian refugees are food, shelter, improved health care and education as well as livelihood opportunities.

“This is not just a number, these are people behind these numbers, mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters, people just like you and I, that have been forced to flee their homes to seek safety and save their lives
“70,000 refugees are 70,000 daughters and sons.

Their dreams and plans were disrupted by violence in the North-West and South-West regions of Cameroon where a conflict between secessionist Non-State Armed Groups and the army is displacing people from their homes since 2017.

UNHCR says recent arrivals and UNHCR’s protection monitoring confirm killings, abductions, forced evictions and other forms of violence, with armed groups attacking schools and hospitals.

Over 8,000 Cameroonian women, men and children have arrived in Nigeria’s Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Benue, Enugu, Cross River and Taraba States in the past 12 months, many in hard-to-reach rural areas.

UNHCR in collaboration with the National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and IDPs, registered them.

59 percent found refuge in local communities while the rest live in four settlements which UNHCR helped build on land generously provided by the government.

It acknowledged that Nigeria had a progressive open-door approach to refugees, allowing refugee girls and boys to go to school just like nationals and their parents to work where they can.

With support from UNHCR, Nigeria provides primary health care to refugees and nationals alike.

With rising food prices, the economic hit of COVID-19 and the refugee influx, needs are on the rise with serious risks of gender-based violence and negative coping mechanisms such as begging and survival sex.

The amount of support UNHCR can deliver is increasingly falling short.

Cash for food, for instance, had to be reduced since 2019 due to insufficient funding.


7 million is needed to respond to the needs of a total of some 78,000 refugees and asylum-seekers of different nationalities and to IDP needs – protection, camp management/coordination, shelter and non-food items such as blankets and jerry cans.

Cameroonian Refugees: UNHCR lauds Nigeria, seeks international support

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