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Governors, UNDP launch $100m Lake Chad stabilisation project

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Lake Chad basin governors, the United Nations development programme (UNDP) and other multi-level partners have signed a $100m regional stabilisation facility aimed at ending the humanitarian crisis and scale up the range of stabilisation intervention in Lake Chad Basin.

The four Lake Chad Basin countries have welcomed this joint initiative, as part of their own ongoing efforts to secure and stabilize the region.

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The project was formally ratified on Wednesday night in Niamey, Niger Republic at the ongoing three-day second meeting of the Lake Chad Basin Governors’ Forum (LCBGF).

The conference organised by the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC), with the support of the African Union (AU), the UNDP, Crisis Management Initiative (CMI) and German Government was the outcome of the inaugural meeting of the LCBGF in Borno State in 2018, for the Regional Stabilization Strategy (RSS) for recovery and resilience in areas affected by the Boko Haram insurgency in the region.

The Facility will start operating on the first day of September this year for two years, till 21 August 2021 in the eight affected regions of the four countries of Cameroun, Chad, Niger and Nigeria.

It will serve as a rapid response mechanism to help the local authorities curtail the Boko Haram insurgency by restoring and extending effective civilian security, improve the delivery of basic services and livelihoods.

Speaking at the event, the UNDP Regional Director for Africa, Ms. Ahunna Eziakonwa, said: “With the Regional Stabilization Facility, we have a unique and time-bound opportunity and a collective obligation to restore hope to affected populations, especially women and youth who have been most affected by this scourge.”

“If we respond appropriately to grievances and end the spiral of insecurity, forced displacements and conflict, the situation in the Lake Chad Basin can be stabilized, and the foundations of recovery and development established.”

She also commended the donors for their pledges, saying the contributions show the confidence reposed in the UNDP to run the project and assured of the agency’s determination to make judicious use of the funds.

On her part, Ms. Corinna Fricke, from the German Federal Foreign Office said that “The multi-donor Regional Stabilization Facility’s integrated civil-military approach, including a strong focus on livelihoods and resilience, fills a strategic gap in the existing stabilisation efforts.”

The Government of Sweden at the event signed a cost sharing agreement amounting to 80m Swedish Kronor as a contribution to the Regional Stabilization Strategy.

Others who pledged to deploy funds to support the project which will be monitored by the UNDP and the AU imcludey the Governments of Germany who pledged 40m Euros and the regional governors from Borno, Adamawa, Yobe (Nigeria), Lak, Hajder-Lamis (Chad), Diffa (Niger) and Far North and North regions in Cameroon.

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