Refugee rights-based organization – Inua Advocacy – has pleaded with the Government of Malawi to consider integrating refugees and asylum seekers so that they can contribute to the growth of both local and regional economy.
The organization’s Chief Executive Officer, Innocent Magambi, made the plea on Monday this week when Malawi joined the global community in commemorating this year’s World Habitat Day, which falls on October 2 every year.
On this particular day, the global community reflects on the fundamental rights of all people to adequate housing.
Magambi observed that Dzaleka Refugee Camp does not adequate housing despite that it accommodates thousands of refugees and asylum seekers.
He said relocation exercise the Malawi Government is implementing has further compounded the problem, forcing some to sleep in tents.
“Before the forced relocation of refugees, thousands of refugees and asylum seekers had means to support themselves, their families, relatives and friends in the local economy, and that today all the means they had are nowhere to be seen and they have become aid dependent. Refugees who were able to provide themselves with food and other daily necessities have become aid dependent,” he said.
He said if the Malawi Government had followed through on its earlier pledges to integrate refugees, these people could have used their resilience and talents to make a living in their society.
Dzaleka Refugee Camp in Dowa was designed to accommodate 10, 000 refugees from Rwanda, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Somalia, and Ethiopia. But it is now keeping over 52,000 people.