United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF has raised alarm over the rising number of attacks by Boko Haram in North-East Nigeria and neighbouring countries.
The UN agency said that at least half a million children have had to flee to safety in the past five months, bringing the total number of displaced children in the region to 1.4 million.
UNICEF’s regional director for West and Central Africa, Manuel Fontaine, yesterday said, each of these children running for their lives is a childhood cut short.
“It’s truly alarming to see that children and women continue to be killed, abducted and used to carry bombs.
“With more refugees and not enough resources, our ability to deliver lifesaving assistance on the ground is now seriously compromised.
“Without additional support, hundreds of thousands of children in need will lack access to basic health care, safe drinking water and education,” Mr. Fontaine said.
UNICEF, together with governments and partners in Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger, is increasing its operations to assist thousands of children and their families in the region with access to safe water, education, counselling and psychosocial support, as well as vaccinations and treatment for severe acute malnutrition.
The agency’s work in the region is almost 70 per cent underfunded, having received only 32 per cent of the $50.3 million needed for humanitarian efforts in 2015.
Because of this, over 124,000 children in the conflict-torn area have not received measles vaccinations, more than 83,000 lack access to safe water, and over 208,000 are not in school.

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