In an effort to decongest the country’s prisons, the Department of Immigration and Citizenship Services in central region will from next week start repatriating migrants who have served their custodial sentences.
According to central region publicist for the department Inspector Pasqually Zulu, the initiative comes in following concerns and reports of overcrowding in the country’s prisons which include migrants from Horn of Africa and Great Lakes Region.
Inspector Zulu told Malawi24 that the Central Regional Immigration Office has been engaged on several times to intervene on the situation at Maula Prison Facility which currently has over 3000 inmates.
He further said hosting and repatriating of such huge number of migrants in the country’s prisons drain a lot of resources which could have assisted in other national development initiatives.
The publicist indicated that the first cohort comprising of 114 Ethiopians national is scheduled to be repatriated out of Malawi through Kamuzu International Airport on Tuesday May 31st 2022, fully sponsored by International Organisation for Migration (I.O.M).
Zulu continued to say that despite having few resources to undertake this challenge ahead, Immigration management opted for inter-state consultations mechanism on migration and also engagement of other international partners.
Meanwhile, the department through Inspector Zulu has urged people in the country to stop aiding and abetting of illegal immigrants claiming it as well poses a threat to the national security.
“Into this regard, Immigration department is warning all perpetrators involved in this syndicate of aiding and abetting immigrants in strongest possible terms, that once caught in the malpractice, the long arm of the law will take its course,” warned Zulu.
Statistics indicate that as of Wednesday May 25th, Maula Prison and Kachere young offenders prison, has close to 300 immigrants who were nabbed for violating various Immigration laws and the figures include both serving and those on remand.