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Nigeria: 2019-2021 Humanitarian Response Strategy (January 2019 - December 2021)


I am honored to present the 2019-2021 Humanitarian Response Strategy, with a one-year response plan targeting 6.2 million of the most vulnerable people in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe (BAY) states for humanitarian assistance. The financial appeal this year has reduced from $1.05 billion in 2018 to $848 million, based on assessed needs and the realistic capacity to implement.

Despite a significant scale-up of the humanitarian response by the United Nations and humanitarian partners since 2016, in support of the Government of Nigeria, the humanitarian crisis in the BAY states continues. Civilians still bear the brunt of a conflict that has led to widespread forced displacement and violations of international humanitarian and human rights law. New and protracted displacement, triggered by the conflict, continues to affect access to basic services and disrupts the livelihoods of millions of people. Acute malnutrition among children under the age of five is above emergency thresholds in many parts of the BAY states.

In line with a strong commitment to principled humanitarian action, humanitarian partners will seek to address humanitarian needs wherever they may be located in the BAY states. Strong partnerships between national and international actors are critical to ensuring people receive the life-saving assistance they need. Capacity building for local partners and government counterparts will therefore be prioritized to strengthen national response mechanisms. We also remain accountable at all times to the people we serve, and we will be making a concerted effort throughout the year to continually engage with and listen to the communities.

Although the primary role of humanitarian aid is to help people survive and maintain their dignity, the humanitarian response integrates approaches where and when possible to reduce communities’ dependency on aid. This is especially true with regard to the response provided for returnees, host communities and the protracted displaced communities. For the next three years the humanitarian and development actors in the BAY states will work towards enhancing coherence and synergies between the development and humanitarian
responses, so that they can work jointly with the Government of Nigeria to ensure the sustainable delivery of basic services to those in need, particularly those living in protracted displacement.

In 2018, donors funded the appeal very generously. The $1 billion appeal was 67 per cent funded, representing $700 million. Other large-scale crises outside Nigeria also require donor support, however it is essential to continue this positive momentum and build on the results achieved last year. Should we fail to meet our targets, it could undermine the progress made to date.

This 2019-2021 Humanitarian Response Strategy provides a way forward to tackle the challenges inherent in planning and responding to large-scale needs in a complex setting. The combined strength of our efforts must now unite to provide assistance to the most vulnerable, bolster national capacity and deliver a calibrated and efficient response. I look forward to working with everyone to ensure that humanitarian aid reaches those who need it most and complements longer-term activities that enable the population to develop and prosper.

Edward Kallon
United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator for Nigeria

Operation(s)/ Webspace(s): 
United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Original Publication Date: 
29 Jan 2019
Document type: 
Strategic Response Plan
Inter-Cluster Coordination