Chris Mubanga, head, United Nations High Commission for Refugees, UNHCR, Calabar Field Office, has disclosed that Cross River State is playing host to more than 36,000 refugees from neighbouring Cameroun. The figure he added, represents 63% of the more than 57,000 Camerounian refugees currently scattered in Akwa Ibom, Benue, Cross River and Taraba states, Nigeria.
Mubanga who made the disclosure this morning as guest on “The Public View”, the early morning news and current affairs programme on Calabar based HIT 95.9 FM, to mark World Refugees Day, was happy that while hosting these refugees has been a visible strain on host communities, “local authorities and host communities have been exemplary in their support to refugees in their communities. These are challenging times. We have seen how ordinary people have become heroes by stepping up and leaning in to help.”
Against a backdrop of dramatic social change, not only have record numbers of people fled their homes to find safety, but the entire world is grappling with the devastation of the COVID-19 pandemic, a situation Mubanga says should encourage us all to fight for a more inclusive world, “a world where no one is left behind, including those forced to flee by war and persecution. Everyone, including refugees, can contribute to society and every Every Action Counts in the effort to create a more just, inclusive and equal world.”
He was grateful to the Cross River State Government and several development partners for their collaboration, contribution and support in the response to the Camerounian refugee situation.
UNHCR estimates that 70.8 million people are refugees or have been displaced by violence in their home countries and one out of every 100 people in the world has fled their homes.
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