Donors pledge aid to ease Lake Chad crisis

7 Sep 18

Africa’s troubled Lake Chad region is to receive $2.5bn to help tackle extreme poverty, climate change and violent conflict.

International donors meeting at a UN-backed conference in Berlin this week pledged $2.7bn aid and $467m in loans to fund development and peacebuilding programmes in the region.

More than 17 million people across the Lake Chad region ­– Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger – are mired in what the UN has called a “complex crisis”.

More than 2.4 million have been forced to leave their homes and more than 10 million people need assistance to meet their basic humanitarian needs, such as food and shelter.

The two-day conference brought together more than 70 countries, regional organisations, financial institutions and humanitarian organisations to discuss immediate relief, development and peacebuilding.

Achim Steiner, the administrator for the UN Development Programme, said the funds would help the agency’s work to address humanitarian needs and root causes of the crisis.

“In this way, our response to a crisis is also an opportunity to invest in a future where crisis is less likely, and nations are more resilient,” he added.

According the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, participants agreed that a multi-year approach is necessary to tackle the Lake Chad crisis and conflict.

It said in a statement: “This is needed to pave the way for sustainable and resilient development of the region, and thus contribute to a better future for the affected people.”

The conference was organised by the UNDP and OCHA together with the governments of Germany, Norway and Nigeria.

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