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Displaced children among most vulnerable to COVID-19 —UNICEF

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The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said Tuesday the internally displaced children in Nigeria were among the most vulnerable groups to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the world.

UNICEF Representative in Nigeria, Mr. Peter Hawkins, disclosed this in a statement in Lagos.

According to him, the report, “Lost at Home,” released by UNICEF, examined the risks and challenges facing internally displaced children, and the urgent actions needed to protect them.

The UNICEF official said in North-East Nigeria, there were currently 1.9 million people displaced from their homes and 60 percent of them are children with one in four under the age of five.

Hawkins said: “Globally, an estimated 19 million children, more than ever before, are living in displacement within their own countries due to conflict and violence in 2019; some of them for years.

“As COVID-19 continues to spread around the world, these children are among the most vulnerable to its direct and indirect impacts.

“Hundreds of thousands of children in North-East Nigeria are living in the shadow of conflict, and now in the increasingly challenging shadow of a global pandemic which has potential socio-economic aftermath.

READ ALSO: 148 new COVID-19 cases in Nigeria as total climbs to 2950; death toll stands at 98

“When a new crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic emerges, displaced children are, especially vulnerable and the gaps in our ability to keep them safe are even more stark.

“We must urgently work together, all of us, governments and humanitarian partners to keep them safe, healthy, learning, and protected.”

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