Sun. Jul 21st, 2024

Tundun Biri Tragedy: ActionAid Nigeria Wants Urgent Action, No Empty Promises, Politicisation

By Joseph Edegbo

In the aftermath of the heart-wrenching military airstrike that devastated the Tundun Biri community in Kaduna State, Northwest Nigeria, resulting in the tragic loss of 87 lives and leaving numerous others injured, ActionAid Nigeria, represented by Deputy Country Director Suwaiba Mohammed Dankabo and Board member Hajiya Aisha M. Bello, extended heartfelt condolences during a visit to the community.

The visit aimed to express solidarity with those mourning the tragic loss of their families and friends and to offer tangible support, including the provision of essential food items.

Speaking in Abuja, ActionAid Nigeria’s Country Director, Andrew Mamedu, while condemning the devastating incident, emphasised that ‘‘ActionAid acknowledges the outpouring of promises and commitments from various quarters, including the Northern caucus of the House of Representatives, pledging N350m for developmental projects for the Tundun Biri community, Senate donating their December salaries and President Tinubu’s Fulako Initiative, designed to address the challenges of banditry and kidnapping in the North and for empowerment initiatives in Zamfara, Kebbi, Katsina, Kaduna, Niger, and Benue States.

However, it is worrisome that Tundun Biri had to experience such a catastrophic event before receiving attention and essential basic amenities despite being just about 5km from the State airport.

This raises questions about the possibility of politicising all the promises for the community. There are hundreds of poor and excluded communities across Nigeria, like Tundun Biri, lacking basic healthcare, access to education, clean water, and other essential amenities and this same largesse should be proactively extended to them.’’

ActionAid Nigeria calls on various Ministries, Departments, and Agencies to collaborate with the State government in documenting all these promises and tracking and verifying the implementation of these commitments, especially regarding the provision of essential amenities like hospitals, water, and other basic facilities.

This is to ensure that these promises are fulfilled promptly and without politicisation. We also urge Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) to support this monitoring effort and prevent the community from being used as a pawn for scoring media publicity.

Andrew Mamedu concluded, stating, “ActionAid Nigeria aligns its voice with the people of Tundun Biri in urging for prompt compensation for all survivors and their families, coupled with the implementation of effective corrective measures to prevent similar occurrences in the future.”

ActionAid Nigeria remains resolute in its commitment to promoting human rights, accountability, and community support.

The organisation extends its deepest sympathies to the affected community and urges all stakeholders to act swiftly and decisively.

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