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Malawi revokes citizenship of 396 Burundian, Rwandan nationals

Ken Zikhale Ng’oma, has directed revocation of citizenship obtained illegally by some Burundian and Rwandan nationals

By Lovemore Khomo

The Malawi Minister of Homeland Security, Kenneth Zikhale Ng’oma, has with immediate effect revoked citizenship of 396 Burundian and Rwandan nationals in pursuant to public order and security within the precincts of the laws of Malawi.

Public Relations Officer for the ministry Patrick Botha confirmed the development, saying this is in compliance with the Court’s decision in the case of the Republic vs Uladi Mussa and others being Criminal Case Number 2 of 2017.

Botha said, following this revocation, the law enforcement agencies in their coordinated effort will be effecting immediate deportation of the individuals concerned.

“In accordance with the law, Government will continue to review and deprive Malawian Citizenship for all those individuals that did not comply with stipulated legal process.” explained Botha.

This comes after Malawi government still rounding up refugees who have been staying in different locations without official documentations and permits as both asylum seekers and refugees.

Malawi MP’s visit to Dzaleka Refugees Camp

Meanwhile, on Wednesday Parliamentary Committee on International Relations visited Dzaleka Refugee Camp where they established pathetic living conditions and expressed the need to surrender their belongings that were left behind during operation that could help sustain in their daily lives.

Committee Chairperson Patrick Siyabonga Bandawe advised security agencies and Commissioner for Refugees to help those who were rounded up get their belongings under security escort and supervision.

Similarly, Commissioner for Refugees General Ignacio Maulana told the committee that in fews days they will travel to Chitipa to survey for land that has been designated for a new refugee camp, as  Dzaleka shall be closed.

According to United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) as of December 2021, Malawi hosted 52,678 persons of concern (PoCs) to UNHCR and majority live in Dzaleka refugee camp, some 41 kilometres away from the capital Lilongwe. 

Dzaleka is a protracted camp with a monthly average of 300 new arrivals as 62% are from the DRC, 19% Burundi and 7% Rwanda and 2% other nationalities. 45% of the PoCs are women, and 48% are children. The camp was initially established to host between 10,000 to 12,000 PoCs but now hosts over 52,000 individuals.

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