Mwanza - The department of immigration in conjunction with the Mwanza police have arrested at least nine Congolese nationals who escaped from Dzaleka refugees camp in Malawi.
According to Malawi24, Mwanza police spokesperson Edwin Kaunda said they rounded up the refugees after being tipped off by well-wishers.
Kaunda said the Congolese immigrants were hiding in a bush in a village close to the Zobue border when they were arrested.
“The police officers patrolled the area around 20:00 in the evening and found these people hiding,” he was quoted as saying.
This came as reports indicated that refugees at the overcrowded Dzaleka camp had been surviving on minimal food rations due to donor cutbacks. Refugees are also prohibited from working, The Mail and Guardian reported.
The United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) Southern Africa spokesperson, Tina Ghelli, said the camp, which was about 45km from Lilongwe was a humanitarian disaster for at least 24 000 refugees.
News 24 reported in 2015, that hundreds of illegal migrants, most of them from Ethiopia, were being detained in Malawi in appalling conditions after they failed to reach their destination, South Africa.
Statistics from Malawi-based Child Rights, Advocacy and Paralegal Aid Centre (Crapac), showed that large numbers of African migrants were passing through Malawi en route to South Africa.