Malawi celebrates World Refugee Day

Written by  Litness Chaima

Political tension in every country leads to greater fear amongst its citizens especially when these tensions escalate into wars and it sounds simple when political leaders call for tolerance and responsible democracy to avoid political instability in a country.

Refugees at Luwani camp Refugees at Luwani camp


Listening to stories of some Mozambican refugees who fled into Malawi in fear of losing their lives, one would appreciate the importance of peace that exists in the warm heart of Africa, Malawi.


Luwani camp in Neno is hosting 2,700 Mozambican refugees. One of the refugees, Farguesi Mattheus narrates how her in-law was brutally killed, merely for belonging to another political party.


“My In-law had regalia of FRELIMO. Unfortunately, he met RENAMO soldiers who arrested him. While in holding, the soldiers tortured him to death and later they came for my husband but later on, he was released. It is very sad to note that political differences resulted to the death of this man,” narrated Mattheus.


Malawi, being a signatory to various treaties including that concerning refugees, the Ministry of Home Affairs and Internal Security says the country is obliged to continue taking care of refugees and ensure that they are repatriated to their home countries at an opportune time.


Despite being held in such camps, refugees encounter different problems that affect their health and some of the refugees complained of health care facilities that seem to not cater for their health needs.


Chief Director responsible for reforms in the Ministry of Home Affairs and Internal Security, Kennedy Nkhoma, said government is looking into such problems so that all people in refugee camps are treated to health facilities that are conducive and modern.


“As government, we will bring on board the Ministry of Health to look into the issues that have been raised by people living in this camp. We will also work with UNHCR to extend the hospital here. We want the camp to be operational and friendly as possible,” explained Nkhoma.


United Nations High Commission for Refugees - UNHCR Representative Vidar Ekehaug hailed Malawi for its warm and friendly treatment to refugees, adding that such an environment accords the refugees a place to heal and make them part of the global community.


“United Nations strives provide security to people who have left their home countries for various reasons including war. Malawi is doing well in hosting refugees and let me commend government for doing the best it can for such people,” he said.


World Refugee Day is celebrated on 20th June every year and commemorations for this year were held at Luwani Refugee Camp in Neno under the theme: We Stand Together With Refugees.


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