Food shortage hits Bauchi IDP camp as children feed on onion leaves

Food shortage hits Bauchi IDP camp as children feed on onion leaves

- Intense hunger has forced adolescent children to feed on onion leaves for survival in an IDP camp in Bauchi state

- The camp is located about two km from Rindebin community in Bauchi local government area of the state

- Children and adults in the camp have been struggling to survive, with little or no assistance

A report by the News Agency of Nigeria reveals that intense hunger as a result of inadequacy of food items in an Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) in Bauchi state, has forced adolescent children to feed on onion leaves for survival.

According to the report, children between the ages of three and five, looked pitiful as they consume the leaves.

The camp is located about two km from Rindebin community in Bauchi local government area of the state.

Some of their parents interviewed said there were no enough food, as such they had to ‘improvise’ ways of tackling hunger, saying they believed onion leaves were nutritious and would also protect their children from hunger and diseases.

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One of the parents in the camp, Mrs Aisha Musa, said that for the past one year, children and adults in the camp had been struggling to survive, with little or no assistance from all quarters.

Another parent, Mrs Ajidda Ahmed, said the hardship being encountered were enormous, adding that most of them had given up any hope of living a normal life.

Her words: “Both adults and children suffer from hunger; this has resulted in forcing us to eat raw onion leaves from sellers that come in to the camp.

“Rainy season is about to set in and another fear is the outbreak of child childhood diseases because for the past one year, our children were not immunised and there are no water, sanitation and hygiene facilities.

“We defecate in the bush and the rain water will soon wash our faeces back to the stream, where we source formwater to drink.”

Already, children under two years in the camp were showing symptoms and signs of malnutrition.

Commenting on the situation, a leaders of the IDP camp, Mr Bulama Gojja, said that they were over 200 in number of the Shuwa-Arab stock from Marte, Marfa and Jere local governments of Borno state, and that they forced to relocate to the camp last year as a result of the activities of Boko-Haram insurgents.

Gojja enumerated their challenges to include insufficiency of food items, lack of potable water, health facility and education for their children.

The leader therefore solicited for assistance from both government and non-governmental organizations, particularly in the areas of health, education, potable water and agriculture inputs like fertiliser, seed and herbicides to enable them engage in farming.

Meanwhile, millions of Katsina state residents have been grappling with water shortages in the past few weeks.

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According to a media report, residents of the north-west state are currently experiencing serious difficulties getting water.

Some of the residents interviewed, say Katsina metro is facing the worst portable water shortage in its history so far.

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