The Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, has traced the humanitarian crisis in the North-East to the nation’s failure to learn lessons from the civil war to build her internal capacity and mechanisms for managing such situations.
He also affirmed the National Assembly’s commitment to bringing succour to parts of the country facing humanitarian challenges.
Ekweremadu spoke when he received a delegation from the Princess Modupe Ozolua-led Empower 54, which paid him a courtesy visit in Abuja.
He observed that as a country that had gone through armed conflict and humanitarian crises, Nigeria ought to have learnt from such experiences and strengthened her capacity to build peace and manage humanitarian challenges.
He said: “As a young boy in the 1960s, I experienced firsthand the humanitarian crisis in the eastern part of Nigeria occasioned by the Biafran war. Then, we had to depend on international donors and humanitarian organisations.
“Unfortunately, from the developments so far in the North East, it is clear that, like virtually every other thing in our history, we did not learn from that experience. We remain heavily dependent on humanitarian organisations and donors.
“If we had learnt from the experience of the civil war, Nigeria would have needed little or no external support. We would have built our internal capacity and mechanisms to manage the North East situation”.
Ekweremadu, however, commended the Empower 54 for its humanitarian outreach, particularly its efforts to have some of its supplies manufactured in Nigeria.