By: Akombi Lionel, Buea
During a press conference called by James Nunan on July 14th, 2020 in Buea, the head of the UN sub-office for the coordination of humanitarian affairs for North West and southwest regions of Cameroon, to clarify important issues relating to humanitarian NGOs and humanitarian UN agencies operating in the Northwest and Southwest regions of Cameroon.
James Nunan said, in recent days and weeks, there have been a lot of threats and misinformation spreading on social media against humanitarian NGOs and UN humanitarian agencies operating in the two English-speaking regions of Cameroon.
He used the opportunity to clarify the public about the role of UNDP which is partnering with the government to reconstruct the North West and southwest regions of the country
He explained that the UN development program (UNDP) is the development arm of the UN, and they do not conduct humanitarian activities hence they have a different mandate and operate in accordance with different principles.
He clarified that UNDP’S primary partner in every country is the host government and said the UN agency is yet to begin groundworks as they are still in the consultation phase
His comments come days after some separatist leaders had declared UNDP and other developmental partners for the reconstruction of NW and SW regions persona non grata in the Anglophone regions until a ceasefire is called by the government.
The UN scribe regrets the threats against NGOs and their employees, saying they are totally unacceptable He continued by saying that it is vital that humanitarians able to reach people in need without been targeted by any side to a conflict.
James Nunan equally uses the opportunity to assure the people of North and Southwest regions with certainty that his agency will continue to provide life-saving services to communities affected until the end of the crisis, in full accordance with the humanitarian principles while condemning attacks on his staff whom he says most of them are from the affected regions of the conflict
He equally reminded the pressmen and women that 2.3million people have been affected by the crisis in the two English-speaking regions.
1.4million have been targeted with humanitarian assistance in 2020, 679.000 persons internally displaced as a result of the crisis, and almost 60.000 refugees in Nigeria.