The government of Rwanda has asked all Rwandan refugees who are living in other countries including Malawi to go back home claiming their country is now a peaceful.
Ministry of Disaster Management and Refugees in Rwanda said all the country’s refugees who are still in exile are encouraged to be repatriated before coming into effect of the cessation clause which is on 31st December, 2017.
The cessation clause will mean that all Rwandan refugees will no longer be recognised as refugees since their country is peaceful.
Speaking at a recent news conference ahead of yesterday’s deadline; the Minister for Disaster Management and Refugees affairs, De Bonheur Jeanne d’Arc, said the Rwandans will still be allowed to repatriate after the coming into force of the cessation clause but there will be no reintegration packages for them.
In an attempt to see all the Rwandan refugees going back to their mother country, since 2011, Ministry of Disaster Management and Refugees in Rwanda has carried out different activities encouraging the refugees who are still in exile to repatriate before the coming into effect of the Comprehensive Solutions Strategy Cessation Clause) today.
‘Since Rwanda is a peaceful country, we encourage the Rwandans to repatriate before the coming into effect of the cessation clause. Further, for those who are carrying out different activities in host countries, they are advised to get necessary documents allowing them to legally live in those countries,’ said the minister.
Apart from advising the Rwandans to repatriate or get proper documents, the minister also reminded the Rwandan refugees that they won’t get any support from International Humanitarian Organisations as usual from the time the cessation will come into effect.
The Cessation Clause on Rwandan refugees which comes into effect today will have no extension as it has previously been. It is provided by 1951 Convention in its article 1 C spelling out the conditions under which refugees ceases to be called refugees.
85,596 Rwandans are reported to have been repatriated since 2009. Malawi is reported to have over 5,000 Rwandans as menafn reported.
In 2016, 5,781 Rwandans from different countries repatriated while from January, 2017 up to end of last year 14,831 were received.
Those who recently repatriated were helped to get a one year health insurance cover, food package lasting three months, identity cards.
They were also supported to start some small income generating businesses where each adult was given US $250 while each child received US $150.