Peter Obi, the Labour Party’s (LP) presidential candidate, has criticised the ongoing presence of Nigerians in IDP camps, saying that citizens shouldn’t be forced to live as refugees there.
Obi said this yesterday while visiting Benue State to celebrate Christmas with the residents at the IDP camp in Abagana, Makurdi Local Government Area.
The LP presidential candidate, who donated N3 million to the IDPs, said:-
“I decided that today, I will be in Kogi and Benue to celebrate with people in IDPs camps. Nigerians should not be living in the camps in their country.
“So, I am appealing to the Federal Government, whatever it takes to ensure Nigerians don’t live as refugees in their country must be done.
“I assure you that the next government, as we progress, we will ensure this does not continue. Today, we are here just to tell you to remain faithful, remain prayerful, keep all your hope in God.
“What you are passing through is what Nigeria is passing through. What affects you affects everyone. We cannot say we are doing well when you are here.
“As long as you remain here, Nigeria is not doing well. It is when you leave and you are in your homes, farming and doing what you are supposed to do to help Nigeria become productive that Nigeria will be proud to say we are Nigerians.
“As long as you remain in IDPs camp, Nigeria is in IDPs camp. So, I have come here to celebrate with you. I am pained that Nigerians are in camps. You are in camp and we are also in camp because if you were in your homes today, I would have been in my home but since you are here, we can’t continue to celebrate. This is what we portray as a country.”
Responding, Executive Secretary, Benue State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Emmanuel Shior, appreciated Obi for the show of love for the IDPs in Benue and promised the state will continue to pray for him as he moves round the country to canvass for votes.
Obi was in the state recently where he visited Daudu 1 and also donated relief items to them.
Shior, who thanked Obi for celebrating Christmas with the IDPs and for encouraging and giving hope to the over 10,000 IDPs housed at the Abagana camp, prayed God to grant him his desires to rule the country.