Ivoirian refugees return home

By Our Monrovia Correspondent | October 14, 2013

With the dry season setting in, the United Nations High Commission (UNHCR) has succeed in repatriating some four hundred eighty-nine Ivoirians who sought refuge in Liberia during hostilities in their country in 2010 and 2011 respectively.

About a month ago, efforts to repatriate about two hundred Ivoirians to their country was stall by the heavy rain and bad road condition which caused the repatriation convoy to divert to Zorgeh District in Nimba County.

Mr. Sulaiman Momolu, Spokesperson of the UNHCR had promised that as soon as the weather and road condition improve, the diverted Ivoirians would have been repatriated to their country of origin.

The recent efforts saw the repatriation of Ivoirians from camps in Maryland and River Gee who were among the diverted convoy as well as others who had expressed desire to return home.

According to Mr. Momolu, repatriation packages to the Ivoirians were given to them after they were transported to Ivory Coast.

Although he did not state the reason for the new delivery of packages, there have been instances where people signed for and got their packages but soon returned to Liberia citing security issue as their grounds.

He disclosed that the 489 refugees repatriated bring to 12,709 the total number of refugees repatriated since UNHCR commenced repatriation in 2012.

Mr. Momolu pointed out people from countries such as Pakistan and Sierra Leone among others were seeking asylum in these refugees camp.

The UNHCR spokesman said that Liberia had hosted more than 79, 000 Ivorian refugees and UNHCR is doing well in catering to them.

He said that children from Ivory Coast, who are residing currently on various camps in Liberia, will be reunited with their parents.

Mr. Momodu stressed that the United Nation High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) is working in collaboration with the Liberia National Red Cross Society (LNCRS) to get these children reunited with their parents.