IGAD explores new polices to deal with migration trends

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Abyssine Miniunga, internally displaced on an islet in the middle of the Congo River near Yumbi, poses near her shelter for a photograph on January 28, 2019. - Several hundred displaced people have found refuge on the islets of the river, according to humanitarian actors on the ground, as they fled the ethnically motivated mass killings across the river in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Between December 16 and 17, 2018, at least 535 people were killed in Yumbi Territory, according to the United Nations Joint Office for Human Rights. (Photo by ALEXIS HUGUET / AFP) (Photo credit should read ALEXIS HUGUET/AFP/Getty Images)

Forced displacement presents a major development challenge in East Africa.

The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), in partnership with Maseno University and the Organisation for Social Science Research in Eastern and Southern Africa (OSSREA), hope to find solutions to the issue during their joint International Scientific Conference on Forced Displacement and Mixed Migration in the and East and the Horn of Africa.

Despite past joint efforts, the IGAD region has still continued to experience significant levels of forced displacement and mixed migration flows.

Speaking during the opening ceremony, World Bank representative Joanna P. De Berry, raised concerns over forced displacement that strains regional governments and resources, especially when they become protracted.

“Forced displacement can deny people the opportunity to proceed on a development trajectory,” De Berry said. Host communities are equally affected, and World Bank recognises the resilience of migrants, host communities and seeks to build on that by supporting self–reliance and comprehensive resources in line with the Global compact on Migration’’.

Ms. Fathia Alwan Director of IGAD Health and Social Develeopment, Dr. Solomon Munyua, ICPALD Director and Mr. Bornwell Kantande, Head of UNHCR Regional Service Centre.

This conference seeks to enable a scholarly and policy interrogation of the relationship between forced displacement and other forms of migration (mixed migration flows) and analyse new knowledge and developments in migration policies and management.

“We have to remember that nobody leaves their home, their family, their entire life behind, based on a sudden, impulsive urge, desire, or idea. People flee for a reason, and these reasons will not disappear anytime soon. The best we can do is strive to identify these reasons and to collectively seek durable solutions for the affected populations.’’ says Ms. Fathia Alwan, Director of IGAD Health and Social And Mixed Migration in the East and Horn of Africa.

Ms. Fathia Alwan, Director of IGAD Health and Social And Mixed Migration in the East and Horn of Africa

At the end of 2018, the IGAD region had a displaced population of more than 12 million.  9.2 million of that total was comprised of internally displaced persons. Refugees made up 3.7 million refugees.

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