The government of Japan has this year contributed $2 million and promised to commit another $1m next year for the resettlement of Rwandan refugees who are returning back to Rwanda.
This was disclosed on Thursday, during the launch of a resettlement project by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), resettlement project in Nyabihu District, Western Province.
Gen Marcel Gatsinzi, the Minister of Disaster Preparedness and Refugees was present at the launch of the project.
The financial support by Japan, according to officials, will see 500 households receive local cows while another 500 will receive hybrids, and every family will be given two goats while the remaining 50 percent of former refugees will acquire vocational training with necessary equipment for self employment.
“As a ministry, our major responsibility is to manage disasters and ensure the welfare of returnees and refugees living in our country,” said Gen. Gatsinzi.
Gatsinzi added that over 3.4 million refugees have returned to Rwanda from the neighbouring countries like Tanzania, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo since 1994.
“We want to solve this problem of refugees once and for all by December 2011.That is why we are engaged in discussions with Rwandans abroad who live as refugees to return home voluntarily,” explained Gatsinzi.
The government also welcomed the support it receives from IOM which profiles returnees and equips them with vocational skills, and also provides them markets for their products.