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More than 70 Angolans repatriated – News

A group of 73 Angolan citizens, including minors and their mothers, were repatriated to Angola on Tuesday afternoon.

The children and their mothers were temporarily housed at the Ondangwa National Youth Service Center before their repatriation.

The executive director of the Ministry of the Interior, Immigration, Security and Protection, Etienne Maritz, said in a press release on Tuesday that a significant step was taken when the people in question were handed over to the Angolan authorities for their safe return to Angola.

The situation arose due to the distressing circumstances surrounding the presence of minor children in several towns in Namibia, where they were observed selling wooden products.

He added that the government reaffirms its commitment to upholding the rights and well-being of all people in Namibia, including migrant children and their families.

“This collaborative effort with Angolan authorities underscores the importance of international cooperation to address cross-border challenges and ensure the safety and well-being of vulnerable populations.

“The government of Namibia extends its appreciation and gratitude to the Angolan authorities for their cooperation in this matter and their commitment to reintegrate the children and mothers into their communities in Angola,” he said.

The ministry urged the public to report any suspected cases of human trafficking or exploitation of children to the relevant authorities in order to protect the rights of children enshrined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Care Law and Child Protection, the Anti-Human Trafficking Law, as well as various laws applicable in Namibia.

ABOUT THEM

The group, belonging to the Mwila tribe, has been migrating to Namibia in search of food and better living conditions since early 2021.

At the time, southern Angola experienced low rainfall for about four years, leading to water, crop and pasture shortages, as well as livestock losses.

They have been selling wooden items and kitchen spoons at traffic lights and in different shopping centers in various locations.

In January 2022, a group of 1,300 Angolan citizens were repatriated to Angola from the village of Etunda, in the Omusati region.

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