29th March 2023
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Nearly 300 Burundian & Congolese refugees relocated to WES

Author: Lugala Mulai | Published: Friday, March 17, 2023

Refugee families camped in Makpandu refugee camp after being relocated from Juba. (Photo: Justin Berewete Elia).

Authorities in Western Equatoria State say they have received about 278 Congolese and Burundian refugees, who relocated from a camp in Juba.

Paulino Zizi Bugwa, the state Commissioner for Refugee Affairs said the displaced civilians arrived at the Makpandu refugee camp from Gorom in Juba Wednesday.

Makpandu, an area 43 kilometers east of Yambio, currently hosts about 8,200 refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic, Sudan, and other fragile countries in the region.

Refugee Affairs Commissioner Zizi told Eye Radio that the state government is expecting more 52 refugees next week.

“The day before yesterday (Wednesday), we received refugees from Gorom in Juba, these refugees are from Congo and Burundi. We have so far received 278 we are expecting 52 more to be transported to Makpandu from Juba next week.”

The refugees have reportedly requested to be relocated to Eastern Equatoria State in order to cultivate their own food.

Zizi said the authorities allocated a five-kilometer piece of land to the refugees for cultivation.

According to him, the allocation was done in consultation with the local chiefs.

“I decided to give land for cultivation for the refugees in Makapandu, I contacted my ruling brothers the chiefs such that the refugees are allotted land for them to cultivate, the land given to them is around five kilometers squared this will give them enough space for cultivation for years.”

“I want to tell you that since the arrival of the Burundians in Makpandu the day before yesterday they were very happy because the people that received them speak in their dialect.”

According to the UN refugees agency UNHCR, South Sudan hosts some 330,000 refugees and asylum-seekers mainly from Sudan and DR Congo.

On the other hand, the country has the largest refugee crisis in Africa with over two million of its population displaced to refugees and IDPs camps due to conflict, insecurity and the impact of climate change.


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