Nigeria: At least 14 killed and 8,000 affected in Ngala camp fire
At least 14 people were killed and 15 others wounded in a major fire outbreak that ravaged the International School (ISS) IDP camp in Ngala LGA on 16 April.
The fire reportedly started around 10.00 a.m. from a cooking point, spreading and destroying over 300 shelters and one communal shelter before it was put out. More than 8,000 IDPs were directly affected with homes, property and valuables lost to the inferno. The wounded IDPs are receiving treatment at the camp clinic run by partners.
Aid workers and government authorities started a rapid assessment of the impacts and are currently mobilizing support, particularly shelters, food and NFIs for the affected people. ISS camp, which hosts over 40,000 IDPs is one of two major camps and several host communities in Ngala LGA which shares a border with Cameroon and continues to receive influx of new arrivals from neighbouring LGAs (such as Kala Balge), as well as refugees crossing back from Cameroon.
Despite the scale up of sensitization and awareness programmes on fire outbreak prevention and mitigation measures by partners, the congestion of camps, further exacerbated by the daily influx and clustering of makeshift shelters (mostly made from dry and flammable raffias), increases the risks of fire incidents.
Partners continue to advocate for the allocation of additional lands to allow for the construction of new shelters to decongest camps across the state.