WHAT SHOULD THE ZAMBIAN GOVERNMENT DO FOR AND TO RWANDAN REFUGEES UNDER THEIR CARE AND PROTECTION?
Zambia has been hosting Rwandan Refugees since the year 1994-just days after the infamous Genocide against the Tutsi.
The relationship between these two groups of people has been cordial for the most part for over the past two decades,
The Zambian Government has tried within their powers to accommodate these unfortunate people even where the International Community has failed-thereby, making Zambia an unparalleled Refugees’ host across the Southern Region.
It is to be noted that most Rwandan Refugees currently living in Zambia were accorded Refugee Status pursuant to the 1969 OAU Convention-which offers protection to those people who tend to be fleeing war or any significant civil disorder that would make one’s home unsafe.
Civil disorder is absent in Rwanda as from all the four corners of the Rwandan Republic,
War on the other hand is non-existent and over the past fifteen(15) years Rwanda has not known any political turmoil nor war of any sort as evidenced by the security which is found all over the Rwandan territory guaranteed by the responsible RPF Government headed by H.E President Paul Kagame.
Refugee protection is a personal right to be sought for private reasons and as such,
Those Refugees living in Zambia who still feel that they are at risk of individualized persecution upon their voluntary repatriation to Rwanda and have a prima facie case to buttress their respective claims ought to be granted a chance to present their stories to the relevant designated authorities in order for them to continue receiving UNHCR Protection under the more narrow grounds covered under the 1951 UN Convention on the Refugee Status.
Precedent has shown that the aforesaid class comprises of less than 0.5 Percent of the Rwandan Refugee Community living in Zambia as legally-they have been failing to meet the criteria set by the International Community because of the subjective and ill-informed nature of their claims.
All in all,
It is either the Rwandan Refugees living in Zambia do not simply have access to accurate information vis-à-vis the current political atmosphere in Rwanda or they have chosen to hide under the UN Refugee Status for commercial purposes-fearing that the alternative will subject them to Zambian Immigration Laws which means more taxes to remit.
The pertinent question remains;
Isn’t it high time that the Zambian Government started applying Immigration Laws to the aforesaid Migrants of “fortune”, lest their legislation remain in perpetual breach by an apparently sacrosanct section of the society?
By Lionel R. Nishimwe(LLB,Hons/IGCSE).mmigration Laws to the aforesaid Migrants of “fortune”, lest their legislation remain in perpetual breach by an apparently sacrosanct section of the society? By Lionel R. Nishimwe(LLB,Hons/IGCSE).