Adamawa, Borno, UNHCR officials discuss repatriation of refugees from Cameroon

The Adamawa and Borno Governments have on Monday began discussion with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refuges(UNHCR) and other stakeholders on the evacuation of about 90,000 Nigerian refugees in Cameroon.

The refugees, mostly from Borno, were displaced by insurgency six years ago.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of the meeting in Yola on Monday, Adamawa Commissioner of Information and Strategy, Mallam Ahmad Sajoh, said plan for the evacuation has reached advanced stage.

Sajoh also said that necessary arrangements had been made by the Adamawa Government to receive the refugees who would passed through Adamawa transit camp from Minawawo camp in Cameroon.

He said about 4,000 of the refugees were from Adamawa.

Sajoh added that agreement had been reached with some communities in Adamawa to host about 1,500 refugees from Borno who have indicated that they would want to remain in Adamawa.

Sajoh who did not give the exact date for the commencement of the evacuation, said the refugees would be airlifted by the Nigerian Air Force.

Speaking at the meeting, the representative of Borno Government, Alhaji Kullima Kachalla, lauded the Adamawa Government for its hospitality to the displaced persons from Borno since the insurgency started.

Kachalla reiterated the commitment of the Borno government to ensure the success of the evacuation exercise.

In her remarks, Head of UNHCR sub office in Marwa, Cameroon, Mrs Mylene Ahounou, said:”the commission is waiting for final authorisation from the central government of Cameroon to embark on the exercise.

”We urged the Nigerian Government to also reach out to Cameroon to facilitate action”.

In his remarks, a representative of the refugees, Mallam Ashigar Mohammed, said they were eager to return home and thanked governments of Nigeria, Cameroon and UNHCR for the concern shown to their plight.

In his speech, Adamawa Deputy Governor, Mr Martin Babale, who is also the chairman of the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), commended Cameroon for its hospitality.

“The Adamawa is prepared to serve as a transit camp for the refugees,” he assured.


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