AU gives Zambia US$100,000 for the support of refugees

By Staff Reporter

THE African Union has contributed $100,000 to Zambia’s hosting of refugees.

In his letter confirming the transfer of funds to the Zambian Embassy in Ethiopia, Chairperson of AU Commission Moussa Faki Mahama stated that this followed recommendations by the Permanent Representative Committee (PRC) Sub-Committee that visited Zambia to undertake the humanitarian assessment.

In a statement issued by First Secretary Press and Tourism at the Zambian mission in Addis Ababa, Inutu Mwanza, the funds have been disbursed under the FISP programme for refugees to help them become self-sufficient.

And Zambia’s Ambassador to Ethiopia, who is also Permanent Representative to the African Union, Emmanuel Mwamba expressed gratitude for the gesture.

Mwamba said Zambia has been hosting refugees since the 1970s by providing shelter, land, food, water, education, infrastructure and security, a matter that came at great cost to the country.

“The burden had been made lighter by resource support from the United Nations, the UNHCR and other humanitarian institutions,” he said.

Mwamba said the contribution from the African Union was a humbling gesture to the Zambian government as it was re-affirming the principle of Africa resolving its own challenges.

Zambia currently hosts 77,370 persons of concerns  who include 51,371 refugees, 3,173 asylum seekers and 22,826 former refugees.

The refugees and former refugees are hosted in Maheba in North-Western Province, Mayukwayukwa in Western Province and Mantapala, in Luapula Province.

Zambia also has transit centres in Makeni in Lusaka, Northern and Luapula provinces.