Unending asylum: Refugees the world abandoned
By Ochiaka Ugwu
Mohammed Adamu was a happy man living a quiet life until Boko
Haram fighters raided his community of Chibok, a sleepy town in Borno
State North East Nigeria. A settlement made popular when the dreaded
Boko Haram terrorists stormed and kidnapped about 276 school girls
on the Night of 14-15 April 2014.
The 40 year-old-trader who is taking temporary shelter in a makeshift
camp in Kuchingoro settlement in Abuja said that his business of
“Buying and Selling” in commodities was flourishing until that faithful
evening on November 2014 when the Boko Haram terrorists raided the
town from two sides.
Adamu (looking up) in an apparent bid to recollect the actual date the
ugly incident happened in November said it was an experience he
wouldn’t wish his enemies to even imagine let alone of experiencing.
Adamu, who is the unofficial Chairman of Kunchigoro IDPs’ camp, a
camp that is located about four kilometers to Aso Rock, Nigeria’s seat
of power lamented government neglect of the camp which he said was
He even took a lash on the international community and donor
agencies for turning their back on them while focusing all attention on
North East States of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa living them to their
His words, “I am at a loss on how humanity’s warm heart has suddenly
turned cold. Imagine that the world has abandoned us; we are now refugees without refuge (almost crying). I wonder how long I will stay in
this camp before going back to my sweet Chibok. I pray it happen soon,
because I am home sick”.
It should be known that all donor agencies have relocated to North East
where the insurgency is taking place leaving these helpless people to
On why he choose to come down to Abuja instead of staying in
established camps in one of the North East States, Adamu said that the
kind of destruction left behind by the raid in his community and what
his eyes saw made him to conclude that it will be a matter of time for
Boko Haram to conquer the whole of North East and institute Islamic
caliphate because of their fire power.
“It was like a dream but the only difference was that I was awake while
witnessing everything. I saw people killed like chicken without
compunction by these terrorist. They are soulless as well as ungodly.
Looting and killings were going on simultaneously without anybody or
force to stop them. Blood flow freely and human beings were
slaughtered like animals in my very face. I managed to escape with my
family in the confusion by Allah’s help”.
On his plan to return home after both federal and Federal Capital
Territory Authorities have asked them to go home or return to the
established camps in North East, Adamu (looking frustrated) “How can
one return to a place that suicide bombing has become a weekly
occurrence and without any civil security in place? He asked rhetorically.
Also speaking, Istifanus Andrass, a 45 years old refugee from Gwoza
Local Council of Borno State said the journey from the troubled North
East area will ever remain green in his memory as he was passing dead
bodies on the road when they were escaping.
“It happened very fast,” Andress, a farmer recounts. While the attack
occurred on a Monday afternoon, his household stayed hidden till late
in the night and ran through the bushes until they arrived a village, six
kilometers from Gwoza.
They found safety in the embrace of sympathetic people. “They were
very nice to us, they gave us food and received us with happiness” he
But his stay was brief in the town as Boko Haram again swept through
the town after two months forcing Andress to migrate to Abuja where
he considers a safe haven.