Namibia under pressure amid influx of Angolan migrants

Namibia said on Friday that thousands of Angolans, crossing into the country to escape hunger, is adding extra pressure to its already strained public facilities.

Speaking at the parliament, the Home Affairs Minister, Albert Kawana said Namibia is in touch with authorities in Angola but the Angolan nationals are refusing to go back.

He said there is no international legal obligation for Namibia towards the migrants, the country has a moral obligation to ensure that they return to their country in a humane manner.

“The situation is not ideal, either for the regional government, traditional authorities or local communities but we are working to see how to address the situation.

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“This is giving extra pressure to mostly the health system and other public facilities,’’ he added.

According to Kawana, the number of people seeking refuge is increasing daily but the country cannot grant the “economic migrants” refugee status because they do not meet the required conditions.

“The Angolans are not crossing into Namibia as a result of instability or persecution; these are economic migrants leaving Angola due to drought.

“They are crossing into Namibia for survival,’’ he said.

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