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Benue IDPs camp records 200 babies in one month

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Benue IDPs camp records 200 babies in one month

One of the Internally Displaced Persons camps in Benue State recorded 200 births in one month, according to the findings of the Integrated Supportive Supervision of the United Nations Children’s Fund, and the World Health Organisation, UNICEF/WHO Humanitarian Health Response IDP Outreach implemented by the Benue State Primary Healthcare Board.

The research was carried out at the Ortese and Ichwa IDPs camps in Guma and Makurdi local government areas, respectively.

In the Ortese IDP camp alone, 200 babies were born in a single month, a statistics that has raised eyebrows and prompted calls for action.

It was discovered that the high figure was a function of the fact that in the midst of their distress, the IDPs find pleasure and happiness in sleeping with their spouses.

This was also alluded to by one of the IDPs, who identified himself as Anngu, and also claimed to be a father of two and resides in the camp with his family.

“Though we live in the camp we find space to sleep with our wives. When we do that we are happy with each other and it helps us reduce the pains we are going through,” he said.

“So we cannot be asked to stop because we are living in camp. The only thing is that we must ensure that our wives protect themselves from being pregnant though some men don’t like the idea of their wives not giving birth.

“As for me I came to the camp about two years ago with my wife and two children and I sleep with my wife, but I ensure that she uses the family planning products that were given to her by the health care people. But the truth is that many are not using it.”

Speaking on the development, the Executive Secretary of the Benue State Primary Health Care Board, Mrs. Grace Wende, who visited the camp, said the number of new births was quite high and the government would need to do something about it.

According to her: “I saw a very interesting sight. I’ve been in these camps often as part of our coordination beat and as part of the main role of primary health care.

“We are part of the major leading partners in supporting the IDPs camps in terms of providing healthcare personnel who will be providing services to these various camps.

“Today I saw many pregnant women and young children and it seems that there is very high level of fertility and child birth within these camps.

“Today alone we noticed that there are 200 new births per month. It is quite high, and government needs to do something about it.

“But from my discussion with them it seems that they are not utilising the family planning products that were given to them. So we need to intensify demand creation generation, especially among the men because they took the problem there. The women are willing but their husbands are resisting those family planning methods.

“The 200 births I am talking about is just in Ortese IDPs Camp. I am not talking about any other. So, 200 babies delivered in one camp in one month is huge. And we have not gotten the situation in other camps.

“Our findings indicated that the women there are helpless. Some women are remarrying within the camp, their husbands are not there; the husbands are also remarrying. They are also, sort of negotiating sex with the women within the camp. Those things are things that require that we intensify our advocacy and decision making within the camps.

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“I have already talked with the State Emergency Management Agency, SEMA, and the Camp Coordinators to see how we can go about it. We will target the advocacy on the men for now,” she added.

 

 

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