An inter-denominational organization, Interfaith Dialogue Forum for Peace (IDFP), on Tuesday distributed Palliatives and Covid-19 protective kits to 500 internally Displaced Persons in Ebonyi State.
The event which was tagged “Reach the IDPs for Covid-19 Sensitization”, took place in Nwofe Izzi and Iduma Primary School, Eziulo, Ishielu Local Government Area of the State.
The forum which is an international NGO aimed at bringing dialogue between Christians and Muslims to be able to dwell peacefully, equally called on Federal Government to replicate what it is doing in the North East to Ebonyi State as the number of IDPs in the state is overwhelming.
Speaking at the event, the chairman of the Ebonyi State team of the Interfaith Dialogue Forum, Archbishop Christopher Nweke Ede said they came to assist the IDPs, as Ebonyi State is one of the 10 pilot states across Nigeria.
“We chose 10 pilot states and Ebonyi State is one of the states. The forum is here to sensitize the people on Coronavirus, share face masks, sanitizers and small palliatives so that they will be very careful not to contract the virus.”
“Both the Imams and bishops are here representing the forum and when we finish, we will go to Ishielu zone to see the IDPs.
“We are trying to ensure that not less than 500 persons benefit. You can see the crowd is too much but we shall share to just five hundred for this zone and go to the other zone and share the same.
On how the beneficiaries were selected, he said, “We were on the radio to inform the IDPs to come and we have their coordinators. It is not the whole village that is here, those that are here were affected by the communal war and inter tribal fighting. We didn’t choose the community leaders, they already have IDP coordinators before”.
On his part, Dr. Haroun Ogbonnaya Ajah, the Vice President General of the Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs and member of central coordinating team said IDFP is a life touching organization made up of Muslim and Christian leaders put together from different countries including Spain, Italy, Saudi Arabia and others.
He stated that they are concerned on how to use religion to better the lives of the people.
“We are here today because there is a pilot program called ‘Reach the IDPs for Covid-19 sensitization, demonstration of protective measures and also distribution of some personal Palliatives’”.
“Ebonyi is one of the ten pilot states and in Ebonyi State we have chosen two IDP locations here in Nwofe Izzi Local Government and the second venue will be in Eziulo Ishielu Local Government. Nwofe is the first place of call.
“The NGO is about two years old now in Nigeria but it has been existing internationally. Our major focus is how to use religion as instrument of peace and development. In the north, we have been on peace mission.”
“We want to move to the hinterlands and reach out to the forgotten people, the orphans, widows and lots of them”.
Mr. Augustine Nwankwo, Nwogha Regina who is a widow among others commended the group and appealed to the federal government to ensure the demarcation of the disputed boundary as that is the only solution to their problem.
He added that Ebonyi State Government should provide camp for IDPs in the State, noting that the crisis has become inevitable in the state.
The team demonstrated the use of sanitizer and face masks to the IDPs.