Rann Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp first came into the minds of Nigerians, when on January 17, 2017 when the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) in a miscalculated air strike bombed the IDP camp killing at least 90 people and injuring hundreds.
Rann is a town in Borno state, northern Nigeria and home to one of the largest IDP camps in the country.
Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) was providing medical care in Rann at the time of the bombardment and most of the quotes in this report was gotten by them.
Even after the bombing incident, conditions in the camp are quite critical, ranging from lack of healthcare, water, to shelter.
In an interview with Silas Adamou, MSF’s Project Coordinator, he says: “The living conditions are terrible. People are living outdoors in makeshift shelters and survive on less than five litres of water each per day.
"That is far below recommended standards. People have no other choice but to collect water from muddy puddles. We treat many patients for diseases like diarrhoea because people get sick from drinking the water.
"The humanitarian situation in Rann is becoming increasingly critical as newly displaced continue to arrive. The most urgent needs now are healthcare, shelter and water.
"There are no functional permanent health facilities in the town and there is no capacity to treat people who need hospital care. Insecurity makes it too dangerous to travel elsewhere for care. Falling sick in Rann is almost a death sentence.”
Meanwhile, while things get worse, more people are trooping into the IDP camp as more people are displaced.
Silas said: “What is really striking is the daily influx of newly displaced people. Shelters made of straw are scattered everywhere. There is no space left in the town, there are even shelters in the middle of the road.
"If more people arrive, I don’t know where they will go. People have lost their homes – everything. They bring the only valuables they have left – cooking pots and kitchen utensils – they have nothing else.”
The entire situation has led to a pervading climate of fear in the camp as many panic whenever they hear the sound of a helicopter or aircraft of any kind.
“Fear reigns over the whole population. Adults and children start running in panic whenever a helicopter flies over. People are afraid of further attacks from the sky and they are also afraid of Boko Haram violence. They say they feel trapped in the middle of fire.
"Mothers tell us how their children wake up at night and cry without reason. Adults tell us they have difficulties sleeping as they worry about their safety and future," he says.
Another problem they face is the fact that the camp is so remote it takes a while for aid to get to them. The worst part of the year is the rainy season.
“When the rainy season starts in a few months, Rann will get completely cut off again as the roads become unusable and the town becomes surrounded by swamps.
"Humanitarian needs are already massive, but the situation is likely to get much worse when the rains start. Rann will become an island and people will be totally trapped.”
Recently, the Nigeria Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) said it arrested 10 drug barons and 60 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) for alleged drug abuse and sale in IDP camps.
The Commandant of the agency in Borno, Mr Ona Ogilegwu, on Wednesday, March 22, in Maiduguri said that the 10 barons were nabbed while attempting to enter the camps to distribute the banned substancedfor sale. Read more:
Meanwhile, ongoing demolition in Otodo Gbame has led to sadness for Nigerians. NAIJ.com has visited the residents and this is what they had to say: