OrderPaperToday – The National Assembly has reiterated that challenges facing women and children- victims of the Boko Haram insurgency must be addressed first.

Mr. Kolade Akinjo made the appeal when the Presidential Committee on Victims Support Fund (PCVSF) defended its 2016 budget proposal to the House of Representatives Committee on Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).

According to the lawmaker, it is worrisome that only 1000 women in IDPs camp were so far empowered with N20, 000 each in the 2015 budget performance of PCVSF, urging the group to widen its scope to capture more women and children in the camps since they are the worst affected by insurgency.

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Earlier, Vice Chairman of the Victims Support Fund, Mr Tijjani Tumsa said that challenges of insecurity had been the major constraint to provision of support to victims.

Tumsa, however, said that PCVSF was able to provide support to pregnant women in IDPs and hospitals for free treatment of victims of insurgency.

“The purpose of the hospital support project is therefore to make funding available to ensure all victims of insurgency attacks have access to effective and timely medical care at no financial cost,” he said.

Tumsa added that the support also included the safe school initiative from N23 billion redeemed from pledges made at PCYSF’s fund raising dinner in 2014.

He said that 391 pregnant women in IDPs received cash donation of N10, 000 to facilitate preparation for delivery.

The Vice Chairman also said that the Victims Support Fund spent N2 billion was expended under the safe school initiative to rebuild schools attacked by insurgents.

“21, 291 children have been enrolled in school camps and host communities schools by providing educational materials. Some of the money has been spent for the reconstruction of schools in Chibok, while some where used to pay fees of victims who were transferred to other schools to continue their education.

“The fund is not embarking on the construction of new schools, but repairing schools that were damaged by the insurgency in the North East.

It is expected that with the current surge to take over occupied territories, VSF will be more engaged in the provision of livelihood in the affected communities,’’ Tumsa said.

The PCVSF was set up as a private sector- driven initiative to administer appropriate and effective support to victims of terrorism nationwide.

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