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Burundi Returnees Gripped By Hunger, Disease, Misery

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Burundi refugees returning in their country end up in a life that is so complicated and have to endure various sufferings including hunger, lack of clothing, shelter, disease and misery.

The plight of these returnees was revealed during a brainstorming workshop of various government and non-government partners and stakeholders on effective and sustainable reintegration mechanisms for returnees, late last week.

Nestor Bimenyimana, director general of repatriation, reintegration and reintegration at the Interior Ministry said, “Ultimately, a returnee ends up feeling like a foreigner at home, in his country.”

Bimenyimana seeks the establishment of an intervention coordination mechanism to be able to channel all the initiatives in accordance with a mapping of the logical framework of a well-defined action plan.

“Everyone is going to be aligned with the same goal. An intervention framed according to the region and the need. All initiatives will be coordinated by the ministry and at the end of the year it will do an evaluation,” he said.

For him, this mechanism will allow the various partners and stakeholders to succeed in the socio-professional reintegration of returnees.

He notes that the installed environment will generate positive effects even in countries of asylum.

The returnees, if they well accorded their rights, then become a point of reference for the rest of the refugees still in exile. Other refugees will be encouraged to return to their homeland.

According to the UNHCR representative in Burundi, welcoming returnees in this context of the Covid-19 pandemic requires a lot of effort in terms of technical and financial resources.

It reassures, however, that all the necessary measures have been taken to facilitate their repatriation in accordance with the tripartite agreements which have been concluded.

Over the past three years, 106,558 returnees have already been received and settled in all provinces of the country. 10 provinces concentrate more returnees due to their proximity to the neighboring countries of Burundi.

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