Deadline on refugee relocation missed

The Malawi Government has failed to meet the deadline for relocation of the refugees back to Dzaleka camp.

Initially, November 30th 2022 was set as a deadline for relocation of refugees residing in the rural areas and 1st February 2023 for refugees residing in the urban areas.

Government had through minister of Homeland security Jean Sendeza in November last year given the refugees until 30 November 2022 to relocate to the camp, saying failing to do so government would commence enforcement.

But almost two months after the deadline government is yet to complete the process of relocating the refugees in the rural areas.

With just five days to deadline for relocation of refugees in urban areas, Oliver Kumbambe Principal Secretary for the ministry of Homeland Security has pleaded with refugees whose countries have attained peace to return.

According to Kumbambe, some refugees have already started returning to their countries.

Simplex Chithyola, Chairperson of the Trade and Industry Committee has told MIJ Online that government has to consider issue of space and other instruments governing the refugees.

“The Dzaleka camp has capacity to accommodate 10,000 refugees but now the camp has over 56,000 refugees so the issue of space has to be looked into to avoid infringing their rights,” said Chithyola.

Over 8,000 refugees are residing outside refugee camp and there have been concerns by Small scale business operators that the refugees are engaging in businesses meant for locals.


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