Press Release on the tension over leadership among refugees in Goma DRCONGO which may undermine the protection of all.
The Urban Refugee Representative in Goma with the UNHCR High Commissioner
While we promote the freedom of free expression and encourage the current debates among refugees on different issues in Goma, DRCONGO we are so much concerned about the lack of appreciation of the refugee diverse perceptions and opinions which undermines the requirements of Respect and Dignity.
At the same time we continue hearing allegations pointing at some stakeholders to seem supporting one group at the expense of the other.
And that should be discouraged, refugees and all those who support them should encourage a free debate which respects and appreciates diversity, and avoid taking side which may undermine efforts to ensure the protection of all. We do support a fairer competition for available refugee leadership opportunities and we also believe in inclusive, free and fair elections of refugee Leaders in Goma DRCONGO. We shall not support anything during refugee leadership Elections that violates democratic principles.
However we continue to observe tensions and suspicions among refugees alleging the appearance of a second refugee Committee which seems to be supported by AIDES and CNR Goma and which seems to be prepared to take over from the current refugee leadership according to allegations.We alerted the CNR on this issue and a meeting was set to address it but it has never taken place and all our efforts to follow-up on this issue have remained unsuccessful.
We believe it is not the best approach to close our eyes on two parallel refugee Committees which are fighting for the same leadership position.
We have initiated several letters addressing concerns surrounding approaches towards refugees and we do welcome different views, and remain open to any form of engagement on any of our correspondences directly without going through third parties. Despite our efforts to put in place various ways of communication with us, we regret that some actors seems to use other ways which are not official.
We are motivated by one thing and we are engaged on one issue: To increase the space of protection for all refugees in Eastern DRCONGO.
Jackson Baguma Ntamuzinda
Global Refugee Leaders Forum/Humanite Plus
Keyshero, Goma RDCONGO