SOME 17 Somali immigrants have been repatriated following an unsuccessful journey to South Africa.
Authorities in Tanzania recently halted the trip, intercepting and detaining the illegal immigrants.
The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) helped the Somalis return voluntarily from Tanzania under the European Union-IOM Joint Initiative for Migrant Protection and Reintegration in the Horn of Africa.
More than 82 Somalis have been repatriated under the programme since last year.
The joint initiative aims to assist at least 1 000 returnees before 2020.
Gerald Kihinga, a representative of Tanzania’s Commissioner General of Immigration, thanked IOM for its continuing support in managing migration and welcomed the collaboration between his country and Somalia in attending to the increasing numbers of illegal migrants.
South Africa is a preferred destination for migrants from East and the Horn of Africa.
According to IOM, the route down south has its share of hazards, including the risk of arrest for those without the requisite documentation, or for those who overstay their welcome in the transit countries.
The population of Somalis in South Africa is estimated at 140 000.
Most have fled Somalia since the instability characterising their country since a civil war broke out in 1991. Somalia also experiences recurring hunger.
Source: – CAJ News