Abuja, 25 March 2021 — The Government of Japan has partnered with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Nigeria with a contribution of $5.7m (equivalent to N2.2 billion) towards the ‘Support for Social Stability and Security of the Conflict-Affected Communities in North-East and Middle Belt of Nigeria Project’. To improve social stability and security, and to mitigate the negative social effect of the COVID-19 pandemic in the two regions, the project aims to support early recovery and peace building in conflict-affected communities in the states of Adamawa, Borno, Yobe in the North East, and Taraba, Nasarawa, and Benue in the Middle Belt.
The prolonged conflict in the North-East and the conflict between farmers and herders in the Middle-Belt region of Nigeria continues to cause human critical incidents with casualties, the displacement of people and increased dependency on emergency humanitarian aid. In addition to the long-standing difficulties in both regions, the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic has also caused deterioration of the security situation and the standard of living of thesecommunities.
Through support from the Government of Japan, the project will adopt an integrated resilience-based strategy that aims to enable community recovery and peace building, through the provisioning of livelihood and economic opportunities, restoration of basic services, the establishment of effective and accountable local governance and the revitalization of social cohesion and community security.
Mr. Shinozawa Takayuki, Chargé d’ Affaires a.i. at the Embassy of Japan in Nigeria, said “The Government of Japan recognizes the importance of stabilization efforts in the North-East and Middle Belt of Nigeria that helps vulnerable people and communities which are facing challenges due to the prolonged insurgency and the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the ongoing health and humanitarian crisis casts a shadow of uncertainty over the North-East and Middle Belt, the Government of Japan is committed and will continue to offer humanitarian assistance through international organizations such as our longtime partner UNDP to mitigate the influence of the crisis in an integrated way that helps to accelerate Nigeria’s response for recovery and enhance communities’ resilience.”
Specifically, the contribution will be used to fund agricultural skill improvement programmes for 2,400 farming households, vocational skills training for 1,000 youth, enhanced access to basic services of 7,200 community members, emergency employment opportunities for 1,800 workers, governance training for 120 state and local government officials and Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) training for 1,000 community members. Furthermore, state and local government officials will be provided opportunities to learn from the Japanese experience on conflict recovery through this initiative.
“Nigeria faces multiple crises, with a protracted conflict in its North East region, and in the Middle Belt, where the farmer-herder conflict has become progressively violent all while the health and socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19 are retracting development gains in its communities” said UNDP Resident Representative Mohamed Yahya. “We are grateful for the strategic partnership between the UNDP and the Government of Japan which will help Nigeria’s recovery through the provisioning of livelihood opportunities, training and strengthening of capacities and basic services to boost peace building and recovery efforts.”
The Government of Japan is a longstanding partner of the UNDP both globally and in Nigeria, with strong support towards the realisation of human security. To date, the Government of Japan has allocated over 16 million dollars, for the recovery and peacebuilding of conflict-affected regions in Nigeria.
About the Social Stability and Security of Conflict-Affected Communities in North-East and Middle Belt of Nigeria Project
To improve the social stability and security and to mitigate the negative social effect of the COVID-19 virus in the two conflict-affected regions of the North-east Nigeria and the Middle Belt, the project aims to support early recovery and peace building in conflict-affected communities. Building on the lessons and successful results of the former UNDP projects in the regions, support to conflict-affected and at-risk communities will be provided integrated community recovery through a peacebuilding and resilience building approach for the proposed four outputs as follows: livelihood and economic opportunities for the target communities are improved, basic services are restored in target communities, effective and accountable local governance is emerging in target states as well as social cohesion rebuilt and community security re-established.
For more information and media enquiries contact:
At the UNDP:
Alison Clement – Communications Specialist, UNDP Nigeria | +234 701 590 6558| firstname.lastname@example.org
At the Government of Japan:
Hiroki Shirai, Advisor to the Ambassador |+ 234-(0)90-6000-9019 |email@example.com