The ministry of homeland security has announced that the second phase of voluntary repatriation of refugees will take place on the 5th of this month.
This follows the successful repatriation of 38 Rwandan refugees in June this year.
According to the Ministry’s spokesperson Patrick Botha, the second voluntary repatriation exercise which involves 108 Burundian refugees was scheduled for last month but failed to take place due to logistical challenges.
He highlights that the exercises are part of the government’s plan to reduce the number of refugees in the country by allowing those whose countries are at peace to return.
‘’Voluntary repatriation remains one of the durable solutions to managing refugees and we expect more to come forward to be repatriated back especially those who do not have issues in their respective countries,’’ Botha said.
The exercise is being implemented by the Government of Malawi in collaboration with The United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) and nations whose refugees have expressed interest in returning to their home countries.
Currently, Malawi has over 50,000 refugees and asylum seekers most of whom are at Dzaleka refugee camp in Dowa District with the Democratic Republic of Congo topping the list with 32,000 nationals while Burundi has 11,000 and Rwanda with 6,000.
Meanwhile, UNHCR has committed over US$80 million for the establishment of a new refugee camp at Kayilizi in Chitipa District.