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27-09-2017 | Latest News , Africa

Nigerians return home to rebuild shattered lives


The Lake Chad crisis forced more than two million people to flee their homes at the height of the conflict in 2015. Over recent months, many have returned home, only to find their houses and their businesses in ruins.


“Around 20 houses were destroyed in this area,” says  Amina Idi, who’s 8th child was born just four days ago. “A bomb destroyed everything.” 


Amina lives in the town of Michika, which saw fierce fighting between government soldiers and the armed opposition. Many residents fled south, or across the border to refugee camps in Cameroon, when the armed opposition took control of the town. 


Amina returned six months ago after the Nigerian army had wrestled back control, but where her house used to stand was a pile or rubble. 


Her family had no choice but to spend what little money they had renting a one bedroom flat in the town, but it meant they struggled to feed their children.


To help Amina and families like hers, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) helped rebuild her house, and so far have constructed over 700 properties, with another 800 planned over the next year.


“You can’t compare your own house to a rented place,” says Idi. “We are now happy, praise be to God.”


Food insecurity remains one of the main concerns in the region. When the armed opposition swept through Zika Dlama’s farm, he took his family into the mountains to hide. But the ongoing conflict meant they had to leave for Cameroon, and then to a camp for displaced people in the town of Yola. 


“These insurgents came and destroyed all our houses, our food stocks and even our animals,” he says. And because famers missed planting season, there was nothing in the fields. “Nothing was left. We even slept on the floor, there was nothing to eat.”


The ICRC has distributed seeds and fertilizers to over 75,000 people, including Dlama, so that they could start growing food again. 


But there are still hundreds of thousands of people who desperately need food assistance and there are still thousands of people living in camps for displaced people, who have nowhere to call home. 



Location: Michika, Yola, Adamawa state, north-eastern Nigeria
Length: 04:52
Format: HD H264 mov
Sound: English, Hausa
ICRC ref: 
Date: September 11-14, 2017

Copyright: ICRC access all

00:00 - 00:18 GVs of destroyed houses in Michika

00:18 - 00:44 GVs of Amina Ida’s house and family


00:44 - 00:57  SOUNDBITE: Amina Ida, 38 year old mother of eight children from Michika (Adamawa state) [speaking in Hausa]:

“Our area was the most affected in Michika by the crisis, all the houses around here were destroyed.” 


00:57 - 01:41 GVs of ICRC workers rebuilding houses in Michika


01:41 - 01:48 SOUNDBITE: Amina Ida [speaking in Hausa]: “You can’t compare your own house to a rented place. We are so happy, Praise be to God.”


01:48 - 02:06 GVs of Zika Dlama and his farm

02:06 - 02:17 SOUNDBITE: Zika Dlama, Farmer from Michika (English): They came and burnt all our houses, and tried to pursue us within the grasses to see if they could see a human being to kill. So we had no choice but to run to Cameroon and stay there.”


02:17 - 02:28 GVs of Zika Dlama walking through his destroyed house


02:29 - 02:39 SOUNDBITE: Zika Dlama, Farmer from Michika (English): “This is my room, this is my brother’s room, this is my wife’s room. This is my sister’s room, and my father’s wife’s room, before it was burnt down. All of them.”


02:39 - 02:55 Zika Dlama speaking to the ICRCs Ikani Daniel Idoko 


02:55 - 03:04 SOUNDBITE: Ikani Daniel Idoko, ICRC field officer (English): “There were really down to nothing, and the assistance has gone a long way to help them with their livelihood activities. Their farms are doing well and life is getting back to normal.”


03:05 - 03:13 GVs of Zika Dlama’s destroyed house

03:13 - 03:17  The mountain where Zika Dlama and his family hid 


03:17 - 03:26 SOUNDBITE: Zika Dlama, Farmer from Michika (English): “We have planted it as you can see now, so this is the maize they have given us. We have planted it, and we have put on the fertilizer. So that is all we have.”


03:26 - 03:50 GVs of Michika market


03:50 - 04:48 GVs of  camp for displaced people in Yola.





Duration : 4m 49s
Size : 450.5 MB
On Screen Credit: ICRC or logo

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