Voluntary repatriation: 38 Burundians leave Malawi


The Ministry of Homeland Security in collaboration with United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) have repatriated 38 Burundi nationals on voluntary basis.

The first batch of the voluntary repatriation is composed of 11 families representing 38 individuals.

The 38 left the country in the wee hours of today Tuesday through the Kamuzu International Airport- KIA in Lilongwe to Bujumbura in Burundi.

Ministry of Homeland Security Public Relations Officer Patrick Botha has expressed satisfaction with the first cohort of the repatriation, saying that the repatriation is one of the durable solutions in the refugee management.

Botha added that more refugees are interested in going back to their respective countries.

“We are happy as a Ministry that 38 individuals have decided to go back to their home country voluntarily, this is the beginning as about 170 refugees are eager to go back to their countries of origin,” He said.

Botha has since thanked UNHCR for the support rendered during the repatriation process of the refugees.

On her part country’s UNHCR Senior Protection officer Roberlin Tozwen stressed that the repatriated refugees went through a sensitisation process,as a way of facilitating proper integration in their home country.

Tozwen lamented that her organisation is facing funding constraints, a situation she said has the potential to delay the repatriation processes of those interested to go back to their countries.

Tozwen said: “The repatriation process is costly because the UNHCR provides various critical arrangements for the repatriation to take place and money about K50 million has been used for the same”.

Among others, the repatriation will help to decongest Dzaleka Refugee Camp in Dowa district as well as enable government expedite opening of a new refugee camp at Mbalizi area in Chitipa district.