Angolan Refugees Get Residence Permits

MORE than 2 400 Angolan refugees will receive Namibian permanent residence permits, the Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration announced on Wednesday.

Home affairs deputy minister Elia Kaiyamo said this was the final phase of a massive collective effort, which began on 30 June 2012 with the invocation of the cessation clause for Angolan refugees that resulted in them losing their refugee status.

“The ministry, in collaboration with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, embarked on an information campaign targeted at Angolan refugees with the purpose of stimulating the desire for refugees to express their willingness to return back to their country of origin as a way of increasing the repatriation number before the cessation clause is invoked,” said Kaiyamo.

Kaiymo said that by the end of June 2013, a total of 2 904 former Angolan refugees had been voluntary repatriated.

The Angolan envoy, who thanked the government for the gesture, said two delegations from the ministries of justice and interior of Angola travelled to Namibia in February and March for two months to register all the former Angolan refugees for the issuing of identity cards and passports which will facilitate their permanent residence status in Namibia.

“Many refugees were registered and their documents were taken to Angola for the issuing of passports. At this stage, we will make a symbolic delivery of 300 passports. However, our promise is clear that the embassy is in permanent contact with the appropriate ministries in Angola and will receive the remaining passports, which will then be delivered to the Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration,” he said.

Source : The Namibian