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Pastor Edewor Egedegbe (3rd right) speaking to a mammoth crowd at Ewu IDP Camp

 

By Emeka Nwokocha

The Executive Director of Value Rebirth and Empowerment Initiative (VREI), Pastor (Comr.) Edewor Egedegbe and Secretary-general of Ughelli South Ewu Clan Development Forum (USECDF) has lamented the poor state of Ewu Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp, located at Ewu grammar school, calling on the Chairman of Ughelli South LG Council, and Delta state government to provide necessary facilities to the camp to cushion the impact of the devastating flood ravaging Ewu Kingdom and other communities in Ughelli South currently.

Pastor Egedegbe, made the passionate call, Thursday when he led a team of civil rights activists to Ewu IDP camp to carry out on-the-spot assessment of the impact of the flood on the people of Ewu kingdom and other neighbouring communities.

Pastor Edewor Egedegbe (right), in midst of a mammoth crowd at Ewu IDP Camp, sharing an idea with one of the managers of the Camp

Speaking to journalists, Pastor Egedegbe said: “The condition of the Ewu IDP camp is very appalling going by what we have seen today. It is disheartening to note that after the camp was set up about five days ago, there are no foams, no mosquito nets, no water, in fact, all the basic things an IDP camp should have are grossly lacking, even the volume of water in the IDP camp tells that the flood is already threatening the camp.”

Pastor Egedegbe, however, commended the government for having the initiative to setup the IDP camp as quick as possible to give succour to the displaced persons. His words: “No doubts, it is a good move by the Ughelli South Local Government to set up this IDP camp. But beyond that, we are asking that the necessary facilities should be put in place to make it habitable.

 

Comrade Kelvin Ejumudo sharing stipends to children at Ewu IDP Camp

“I have lodged this complaint and hope the Delta state government would do the needful by bringing the relevant facilities here as it is doing in other IDP camps across the state.”

He continued: “The crowd in this place is overwhelming, including little children and infants. The water here is not good for drinking and for bathing. We want the government to recognize Ewu IDP camp and put the necessary facilities in place to make it comfortable for the people.

“We are asking the government of Delta state, the member representing Ughelli North, Ughelli South and Udu federal constituency at the House of Representatives, Hon. Francis Waive, including Senator Ovie Omo-Agege to join forces with the government of the state to ensure that needs of these people are attended to immediately.”

Pastor Edewor Egedegbe, fielding questions from journalists

Asked to give an insight on what an IDP camp should look like, Pastor Egedegbe said: “An IDP camp should have good security, portable water, mattresses, mosquito nets, a functioning health centre, enough food, and electricity.”

He added: “I commend the Ughelli South Local Government Council Chairman, Hon. Richard Kofi for responding to our ‘cry’, demanding establishment of IDP camp in Ewu, and also call on every sons and daughters of Ewu kingdom to contribute to the running of the camp.”

One of the displaced persons at Ewu IDP Camp seeking assistance from Delta state government

Speaking, Niger Delta activist and State PRO at Committee for Defense of Human Rights, Comrade Kelvin Ejumudo who doubles as State Secretary, Delta State Human Rights Protection Congress, said: “having assessed the Ewu IDP camp, l am not impressed. You could see that aged women, aged men, including children lie on bare floor because there are no foams in the camp, even the makeshift health centre grossly lack drugs to cater for the health need of the people.”

Mrs. Ese Unukopia, in charge of the health centre at Ewu IDP Camp speaking to journalists

Continuing, Comrade Ejumudo commended Ewu community youths for ensuring that the camp is peaceful. He charged the federal and state governments to provide the necessary facilities in the camp, saying: “The camp needs total overhaul. So, we call on government at all levels to provide mosquito nets, water, food and other facilities. In few days, we want to see that the camp has the necessary facilities to cushion the impact of the devastating flood.”

Briefing Pastor Egedegbe and his team on the functions of the newly set up health centre at the camp, Mrs. Ese Unukopia, nurse in charge of the health centre mentioned some of the challenges to include lack of drugs and medical facilities to cater to the large crowd of persons in the camp. Explaining further, she noted that it was normal that there would be health issues considering the large number of persons taking refuse in the camp, a development she said demanded urgent attention of the government and good spirited individuals to make the camp safe for the people.

HOD, Environment, Ughelli South LG, Mrs. Patricia Okpako, speaking to journalists

Unukopia said she accompanied the Executive Secretary (ES) of the Primary Heath Centre, Ughelli South LGA to set up the health centre in the IDP camp, on October 18, 2022, few days after the camp was set up. She said: “We brought the few free drugs we had to the camp and I also bought some drugs with my money to treat health issues, including vomiting, runny tommy, and stooling and vomiting.”

She stated that the displaced persons in the camp are from Assah, Etefe, Orere, Ogoda, Arawharien, Edjekuo, Ewu, and Okparabe communities, stating that the IDP needs important  items such as foams, mosquito nets, drugs, including Oral Rehydration Solution (ORS).

Niger Delta Activist, Comrade Kelvin Ejumudo, speaking to journalists

Also speaking the HOD, Environment, Ughelli South LG Council, Mrs. Patricia Okpako said: “The flood is fast extending into the IDP camp. We walked through the water to get to the camp. It is a pathetic situation. We came to the camp to educate the people on importance of sanitation and advised them to maintain regular hygiene by ensuring they keep the environment clean to avoid contracting diseases.”

Speaking, the displaced persons called on Delta state government to come to their aid, stating that the camp lacks foams, water, mosquito nets, adequate food and drugs, even as they called on good spirited Deltans to listen to their plight.

 

 

 

 

 

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