Since its deployment in July 2018 at the request of the Resident / Humanitarian Coordinator, UNMAS Nigeria has provided critical life-saving assistance. The main objectives are to develop the national capacities to protect the civilians from the threats of mines and explosives, and to mitigate immediate threats for the vulnerable population in the North-east. The activities include coordination, risk reduction, victim assistance, nontechnical survey, and capacity development for the national and state authorities as well as a civil organization.
As of 28th February 2022, UNMAS Nigeria has achieved the following outputs.
- Explosive Ordnance Risk Education (EORE). EORE is designed to raise awareness on explosive hazards and enhance safe behaviour. UNMAS has coordinated EORE for 1,251,155 (242,225 men, 280,903, women, 394,960 boys and 331,976 girls) beneficiaries across northeast Nigeria. UNMAS has also conducted EORE training of trainers for 14 volunteers of a civil society organisation as well as 42 members of national and state authorities in order to enhance sustainability and national ownership. In addition, UNMAS has conducted Explosive Ordnance Awareness (EOA) sessions for 1021 humanitarian workers, 353 UN staff members and 679 government officials, health care workers, and others since January 2019.
- Non-Technical Surveys (NTS) to enable safe movement and resettlement as well as safe access to livelihood, agriculture and other socio-economic resources. UNMAS has coordinated 264 NTS in 19 LGAs in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe (BAY) states.
- Improvised Explosive Ordnance (IED) Disposal, First Responder and Emergency Trauma Management training and equipment were delivered to strengthen national capacity to reduce the impact of explosive ordnance on conflict affected communities with a focus on IED and first aid assistance. 26 personnel of Nigeria Police Force (NPF) are now capable of IED disposal. From the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and NPF, 117 were trained as Explosive Hazard First Responders, 52 are now capable to train emergency trauma management and 195 are capable to provide emergency first aid. UNMAS also provided 10 kits of Emergency Trauma Bag to NPF personnel in order to reinforce their capacity to assist civilians and colleagues affected by explosive-related incidents.
- A comprehensive data collection and management system (IMSMA) has been developed to collect, consolidate and analyse all available mine action related data and inform the humanitarian response.
In 2022, and after more than ten years of violent conflict, explosive devices continue to put millions of people at risk, not only endangering the lives of the vulnerable population and hinders restoration and access to socioeconomic infrastructure, but also hampers delivery of critical humanitarian aid.
The operating environment remains extremely volatile, particularly in Borno State, where all the major supply routes have become dangerous—due to risk of attacks by non-state armed groups (NSAGs), as well as from unexploded ordnance, particularly landmines of an improvised nature. Road Planted IED, Person-Borne IEDs (PBIEDs) and Vehicle-Borne IEDs (VBIEDs) remain the primary weapon of choice for the Boko-Haram factions. 85 explosive incidents have been reported in February 2022. Between 2016 and February 2022, 2,370 people were injured and 8,575 were killed, out of which 1,387 civilians were injured and 802 civilians killed.
According to 2022 Humanitarian Needs Overview, 8.4 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance in BAY States due to the ongoing crisis while 5.5 million people are targeted for the humanitarian response in 2022, out of which 2.2 million people are Internally displaced, living in formal and informal camps, as well as in host communities. 1.2 million people are estimated to need mine action and 407,000 individuals are targeted across northeast Nigeria in 2022.
UNMAS delivers EORE to affected populations, including IDPs, host communities, returnees and refugees, as well as EOA training to UN personnel and the humanitarian community. Awareness material, radio messages and pre-recorded messages in talking devices are designed to the specific context of Northeast Nigeria and to the specific needs of each gender and age group. In addition to traditional EORE, UNMAS is currently distributing talking devices with songs and dramas to sensitize the population on the risks posed by explosive hazards. COVID -19 safety messages are also being delivered together with EORE messages. UNMAS also conducted a Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice and Beliefs (KAPB) survey and an Impact Assessment of Explosive Ordnance on Groups of Populations in Borno State to identify risks faced by for different age, gender and location groups, and to tailor risk education methodologies and modules for different demographics of the target population. UNMAS also developed national standards for EORE in consultations with the MASWG.
Survey & Marking:
In order to inform the planning of immediate and future humanitarian mine action, it is necessary to collect information on the nature and extent of contamination. In this regard, UNMAS has conducted and coordinated NTS including at the sites for expansion and building of new IDP camps, for the refugees, IDPs, returnees and host communities. In light of the Borno State Government's effort to relocate IDPs from Maiduguri, UNMAS is coordinating with various partners to identify the risks for the people travelling and resettling into potentially contaminated areas and to mitigate the risks for them.
National Capacity Development:
Nigeria is a party to the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention (APMBC). In November 2011, at the 11th Meeting of the States Parties, Nigeria presented a formal declaration of completion of destruction of anti-personnel mines. However, in 2019, at the Fourth Review conference, Nigeria reported contamination in the North-east as result of the conflict. In November 2020, at the 18th Meeting of the State Parties, Nigeria announced the establishment of an Inter-Ministerial Committee for APMBC compliance. In 2021, a request for extension of its obligations under the Article 5 of the APMBC until 2025 was submitted and endorsed at the 19th Meeting of State Parties. The Inter-Ministerial Committee has announced its intention to establish a National Mine Action Centre (NMAC) and requested support in the extension request. Mine action partners will continue to coordinate with the Inter-Ministerial Committee and the Implementation Support Unit of the APMBC. Mine action partners will also continue supporting the Nigerian national, state and local partners to develop capacity to conduct humanitarian mine action, including training-of-trainers courses of EORE and NTS, IEDD/EOD courses.
In order to support survivors of explosive incidents and enable access to emergency and long-term medical assistance, psychological support and social inclusion, UNMAS Nigeria is conducting data collection and mapping of services to identify the needs of the survivors as well as the existing services and establish a referral mechanism. This will enable effective and long-term support for the victims and survivors, with particular attention to needs of women and girls. Such a referral mechanism can also be used by other UN, international and local organizations, enabling well-coordinated and efficient protection assistance. In addition, UNMAS will conduct workshops to train and familiarize the national and state authorities on victim assistance.
UNMAS has been able to deploy to Nigeria and deliver life-saving humanitarian mine action thanks to financial contributions from the Governments of Denmark, the Netherlands, South Korea, Japan and Germany.
UNMAS yearly financial requirement to implement a comprehensive mine action programme is estimated at USD 3.5 million and is reflected in the 2022 Humanitarian Response Plan for Nigeria. A detailed programmatic concept note is available on request.
Data as of March 2022