Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Japanese government contributes money for Nyarugusu refugees

THE Government of Japan has contributed the sum of $ 1.5 (Sh. 2.4 billion) in support of about 60,000 refugees residing in Nyarugusu camp in Kigoma region in North West Tanzania. A press statement issued yesterday in Dar es Salaam by Public Information Associate of the Tanzania based United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)  office said that, the contribution has been focused in four main areas of the camp’s development. The statement mentioned the priority areas to be focused that includes on education, increasing access to alternative energy, supply of portable water and optimizing logistics.  The statesmen is further quoted as saying that, the grant has come about after the visit of a Japanese official at the camp on 25th November 2014 to see the impact of the funding and the Japan’s Charges d’affaire Kazuyoshi Matsunaga reaffirmed his company’s commitment to support the refugee operation in Tanzania. For the past three years, Japan has contributed $ 7.5 million (over Sh. 10 billion) to facilitate the refugees operational activities in the country, the statement noted. During Matsunaga’s visit to the camp, he donated solar lanterns to 30 refugees families in the camp. Providing refugees with solar lanterns reduces the amount of firewood they need to light their houses, thus reducing heath and protection risks as well as environmental degradation from deforestation.  I am here to confirm our strong commitment to and solidarity with all of you, we are determined to support your continued effort to achieve your ambitions and hope for a better tomorrow” he said. He further noted that, solar lanterns are important in the efforts to protect women and children against sexual and gender based violence. The statement clarified that, gender based violence at Nyarugusu camp is have been so high with a majority of the cases being reported during firewood collection and after dark and as a result of enhanced reporting mechanisms in n20123, 450 cases of sexually based violence are reported compared to 247 incidences reported in 2012. On his part, the UNHCR Deputy Representative Robert Tibagwa thanked the Japanese government and the people for their contribution knowing well that, the money comes from the Japanese tax payers. The office of the UNHCR was established on December 14, 1950 by the         United National General Assembly. The agency is mandated to lead and co-ordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve refugees problems worldwide.

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