In the burns unit of Benue State University Hospital, an MSF nurse changes the bandages of a patient injured in an oil tanker explosion. Nigeria, August 2019. © Benedicte Kurzen/NOOR



outpatient consultations


people admitted to hospital


malaria cases treated

In 2019, intensification of violence and insecurity increased humanitarian needs in Nigeria. An estimated one million people are cut off from aid.

In the northeast, over a decade of conflict between the Nigerian government and armed opposition groups has had severe effects. The UN estimates two million people are displaced, and seven million depend on aid for survival. In 2019, a number of aid workers were abducted and killed by armed opposition.

Only people in government-controlled areas in and around the state capital could receive humanitarian assistance. In accessible areas, MSF offered nutritional care, vaccinations, treatment for malaria, tuberculosis and HIV, as well as care for survivors of sexual violence, and mental health support. We also ran water and sanitation activities.

In Benue, people who fled land dispute violence in 2018 remained displaced. We supported the Ministry of Health, which included conducting medical consultations, distributing relief items, building shelters, latrines and showers, and supplying drinking water inside displaced persons camps.

We offered medical care to refugees from Cameroon and to host communities in Cross River State from July 2018 to November 2019, when we handed over activities to the health ministry.

In Jahun hospital, Jigawa state, we provided comprehensive emergency obstetrics and neonatal care.

In Port-Harcourt, MSF ran two clinics offering medical and mental healthcare to an increasing number of survivors of sexual violence.

In 2019, 938 patients completed chelation therapy in our program for children under five affected by lead poisoning associated with artisanal gold mining in Zamfara state. Together with the Ministry of Health and other organizations, we published a report on the pilot program we ran in Niger state showing safer mining practices reduced blood lead levels by 32 per cent.

Noma is a gangrenous disease causing disfigurement. It particularly affects children, leaving scars only complex surgery can repair. Four times a year, specialized MSF medical staff have supported Noma care at Sokoto Children’s Hospital. With the health ministry, we conducted outreach focusing on early detection in 2019.