‘Hopeless suffering’ in Lake Chad as children starve, mothers sell sex to survive – Red Cross

Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs)
Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs)

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) on Thursday said women in the Lake Chad basin had been forced to prostitute to survive.

ICRC attributed it to an insurgency by Boko Haram fighters that had driven millions from their homes and left children to starve.

The violence has displaced over 2.4 million people across the swamp lands of Lake Chad, where the borders of Chad, Cameroon, Niger and Nigeria meet, and disrupted the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of others,’’ ICRC said.

According to the United Nations, up to a million people have been cut off from humanitarian aid by Boko Haram in spite of a regional military offensive against the Islamist militants.

“It’s extraordinary to see a woman and her family and they have nothing other than what they have been given.

“The children are clearly malnourished and it’s just hopeless,’’ Simon Brooks, head of ICRC’s delegation in Cameroon, said.

According to Brooks, as the head of their households, some mothers have been forced to prostitute so they could feed their family, since many no longer have husbands because of the conflict.

“When you don’t have the means to survive, you’ll go begging for it.

“It’s a loss of dignity when you’re having to resort to something like that just to keep your children alive – fraternising with people who have money,’’ he said.

The unfolding catastrophe in the Lake Chad basin was named the most neglected crisis of 2016 in a poll of aid agencies by the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

“Overshadowed by the wars in Syria and Iraq and the global refugee and migrant crisis, Lake Chad has barely made the headlines,’’ Brooks said during an interview in London.

Report says over 7 million people lack food but insecurity makes it hard for aid agencies to reach the most vulnerable.

“Half a million children are severely acutely malnourished and on the brink of death if they are not treated.

“This area has suffered from decades of chronic neglect … if it continues to be under-funded and under-reported, then millions of people will continue to suffer,’’ Brooks said. (Reuters/NAN)


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  • musa aliyu

    Na so o, when someone in Nigeria used #270m to cut grass, instead of feeding them, what di U expect them to do? Allah Ya Isa!

  • Otile

    Where is julius? Let him come and defend his corrupt Fulani masters and sing Sai barbarian for his god.

  • westman

    This os terrible. These people are suffering even after the defeat of bokoharam.
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    • Are you really sure you are better than Boko Haram? Does the message delivered by Mr. Brooks sound like a TV commercial? You have suddenly found an opportunity to sale your business & not even a good business, but a PONZI SCHEME. Remember, it could have been anyone that is trapped at Chad basin & at Mercy of death. Please retrace your steps because I know it is possible to be human again