ASUU Donates Food/Non-Food Items To IDPs In Benue

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The National and State chapters of the Association Staff Union of Nigerian Universities (ASUU) have donated food and non-food items to victims of Fulani herdsmen attacks in Benue state.

ASUU noted that despite not being paid salaries for over 8 months it has decided to identify with the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) who were in pitiable conditions.

The association donated 1,246 bags containing rice, bean, salt, maggie and vegetable oil, as well as 21 cartons of sanitary pads to the IDPs on behalf of University Lecturers across the country.

Distributing the items to victims of the attacks at the IDP camp Abagena in Makurdi Local Government Area (LGA) of the state, ASUU commended the efforts of the state government through the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), stating that without SEMA, ASUU wouldn’t have known the plight of the IDPs.

ASUU National President, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke who was represented at the occasion by the National Resource Person and former NEC member, Prof. Ralph Ofukwo also urged the Government to work towards the return of IDPs to their ancestral homes, adding that the camp was not their home.

He explained that despite not receiving a salary for the last 8 months, the association has decided that it would support the IDPs with its donations, out of the meagre resources they have put together to present to victims of the herdsmen attacks.

While Osodeke stated that the intervention was meant for the IDPs in Abagena camp, he explained that similar
interventions were also being carried out simultaneously in other states that would bring succour to displaced persons.

Responding, the Executive Secretary (ES), SEMA, Sir James Iorpuu lamented that the attacks on helpless farmers in the state have continued unabated, even as he appealed to ASUU to continually pray for the IDPs and other persons in the state.

The ES who was represented at the occasion by the SEMA Programme Manager, IDP Operations, James Iorhuna who appreciated the support of ASUU also called on the Union to join hands with the Government to ensure that IDPs returned to their ancestral homes.

He said his heart bleeds to learn that ASUU was yet to collect their eight months’ salary and still found it pertinent to identify with the IDPs.

While Iorpuu stressed that the gesture by ASUU cannot be quantified, he prayed to God to replenish the association; bless them and cause them to excel in all their endeavours.

The SEMA boss who appealed to parents at the camps to ensure that they do not sell out the relief materials given out to them, stressed that whoever diverts the items would not go scot-free.

The IDP Camp Chairman, Festus Azende notes that it was painful that despite not receiving their salaries for such an interval ASUU has still decided to intervene in the lives of the IDPs.

Woman camp leader, Esther Oota said a chill ran down her spine on learning that ASUU members who were yet to collect their salaries have extended the gesture to the IDPs.

She prayed for them saying that for extending a hand or fellowship to the IDPs, Government would soon commence the payment of their salaries.

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