Human Right

Makamba administration reassures homeless returnees

Following the returnees’ concerns over the lack of homes in their localities, Makamba province governor reassures. “We will do our best to help them have their shelters,” says Gad Niyukuri, Makamba Governor.
He said it after Burundian refugees who had returned from Nyarugusu camp in Tanzania on 10 April raised concerns over the lack of shelters.

Returnees assisted before joining their respective areas

Mr Niyukuri, however, says those returnees have contributed themselves to the destruction of their houses. “Some of them carried away all the sheet metals when they fled while others sold them,” he says.

On 10 April, 744 people from 132 families were repatriated from Nyarugusu refugee camp in Tanzania. They were composed of 329 men and 415 women. They are from three southern provinces of the country including 609 people from Makamba, 129 from Bururi and 6 others are from Rumonge province. All of them fled the country in the 2015 crisis.

The UN Refugee Agency-HCR has facilitated their repatriation. When they arrived in Makamba province they spent their first night in Gitara transit center before being taken to their respective areas by UNHCR. Those returnees say they found their houses were destroyed. “We heard that our houses don’t have roofs anymore,” said a woman met in Nyanza-Lac commune in Makamba province.

Before joining their respective localities, those returnees receive food and non-food assistance, an amount of BIF 70,000 for each adult person and BIF 35, 000 for young people under 18.

According to UNHCR report, a total of 63,143 individuals have been assisted to return to Burundi from Tanzania as of 31 March 2019 since the start of the voluntary repatriation exercise in September 2017. Of those who have registered for return, 7,760 individuals are currently awaiting departure after having had their intention to voluntarily return verified.