No fewer than 112 internally displaced children were on Sunday evening officially reunited with their parents at a special event organised by the Edo State Government at the Government House in Benin, the state capital.
The IDPs are among the over 400 victims of the Boko Haram insurgency in the North-East, who currently receive shelter in a camp operated by the International Christian Centre for Missions located in Uhogua Community, Ovia North East Local Government Area of the state.
Governor Adams Oshiomhole, who hosted the families, in company of members of the state executive council, expressed satisfaction that the state government was able to locate 55 parents of the children.
Governor Oshiomhole, who said his administration was moved by the number of children and infant affected by the insurgency, commended the efforts of the Nigerian Red Cross in identifying the parents of the IDPs.
He, however, urged the Nigerian military to intensify its operations in the North-East in order to enable the 112 families, who are willing to relocate, to resettle in their ancestral homes.
Oshiomhole, who also made cash donations to the families, said efforts were ongoing to reunite more children, as nothing could substitute parental care.
One of the parent, Mr. Lukas Saidu, who spoke on behalf of other families, expressed appreciation to the state government for showing compassion, especially as a former labour president.
“We thank you for wiping the tears from our eyes because many of us have been in tears since we were displaced from our homes,” Saidu added.
Earlier, the coordinator of the IDP centre, Pastor Solomon Folorunsho, said the action of the government had been of great relief to the centre, which caters for over 1,000 persons since 1992.
– Via PUNCH
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