1. Home
  2. Southern Africa
  3. Angola

200 Angolans set to return home this week

[Namibia] Angolan's crossing the Kavango river into Namibia. IRIN
Angolan refugees are to make their way back home from Namibia this week
Efforts by the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) to repatriate Angolans from Namibia get underway this week with 200 refugees set to return home on Thursday. "The 200 are among the 840 refugees who are to be repatriated in the Cunene province in the next few weeks", UNHCR spokesperson in Angola, Fernando Mendes, told IRIN on Monday. Once the 840 have been resettled in Cunene in southern Angola, UNHCR will help a further 2,659 Angolans to go home to Cuando Cubango province, which also shares a border with Namibia. "After that we will resettle 3,497 Angolans from Namibia in the other provinces," Mendes said. There are an estimated total of 12,000 Angolan refugees in Namibia, of which UNHCR hopes to repatriate at least 10,000 this year. But the World Food Programme (WFP) in Angola has warned that a funding crisis has forced it to limit rations for repatriated Angolans. WFP indicated last week that it would need a minimum of US $136 million to feed nearly 1.4 million returnees and people scheduled for repatriation in 2004. "After years of exile, tens of thousands of Angolan refugees in Namibia, Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are set to endure further hardships once they return home, due to an acute funding shortage," the agency said in a statement. "We are currently unable to provide cereals and have not been able to provide the full food basket to those who have already returned. Those who return from Namibia will receive pulses, oil and salt," said WFP spokesperson in Angola, Manuel Cristovao. "Besides the Angolans from Namibia, about 40,000 refugees in Zambia and 19,000 in the DRC are also expected to return this year. We have appealed for cash donations, which will help us to buy the food regionally." On Tuesday the 200 Angolans from Namibia will be provided with food rations for three days and travel by road from the Osire camp, 250 km north of the Namibian capital, Windhoek, to Namakunde in Cunene, said Hesdy Radhling, the UNHCR country representative in Namibia. About 4,500 refugees were voluntarily repatriated by UNHCR to Angola last year in vehicle convoys and by raft across the Kavango river.

This article was produced by IRIN News while it was part of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Please send queries on copyright or liability to the UN. For more information: https://shop.un.org/rights-permissions

Share this article

Hundreds of thousands of readers trust The New Humanitarian each month for quality journalism that contributes to more effective, accountable, and inclusive ways to improve the lives of people affected by crises.

Our award-winning stories inform policymakers and humanitarians, demand accountability and transparency from those meant to help people in need, and provide a platform for conversation and discussion with and among affected and marginalised people.

We’re able to continue doing this thanks to the support of our donors and readers like you who believe in the power of independent journalism. These contributions help keep our journalism free and accessible to all.

Show your support as we build the future of news media by becoming a member of The New Humanitarian. 

Become a member of The New Humanitarian

Support our journalism and become more involved in our community. Help us deliver informative, accessible, independent journalism that you can trust and provides accountability to the millions of people affected by crises worldwide.