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IOM Zim – SA border migration management  forum ends on a high note

By Staff Writer

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) recently facilitated a Zimbabwe-South Africa Cross Border Migration Management Stakeholders Forum ended on a high note with participants enhancing their migration skills.

The activity was part of the Africa Regional Migration Program (ARMP) which is funded by the US State Department of State Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM).

The forum facilitated discussion on migration management issues of mutual concern between the two countries and explore joint solutions to migration management challenges encountered.

The meeting was held at a time when  there are reports of growing challenges facing migrants at Beitbridge Border post.   

The ARMP supports countries to promote safe, orderly, and dignified migration and reduce migrant vulnerability along key migration routes. The program advocates for enhanced migration management at the policy level while also increasing coordination with relevant stakeholders.

 IOM provides technical support and builds the capacity of stakeholders to protect vulnerable migrants, reinforce mechanisms to manage migration in a humane and orderly manner, with a specific focus on upholding the rights of migrants.

The cross-border forum was one of several activities to achieve outcomes under the three programmatic pillars, namely migration management, partnerships, and crisis response.

The expected results were  that governments must demonstrate a commitment to well-managed and humane migration management; and the relevant stakeholders in engaging in efforts to coordinate on migration policy and programming.

Participating  officials were drawn from the ministries of Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage, Foreign Affairs, and International Trade, Labour and Social Welfare, Health and Child Care, Industry and Commerce, and Women’s Affairs, Community and Small and Medium Enterprises Development, alongside their implementing departments and their South African counterparts.

The meeting was also attended by  counterparts from UNHCR, UNICEF, ICRC, and Save the Children. Speaking ahead of the cross-border forum, IOM South Africa Chief of Mission, Lily Sanya, commended the governments of Zimbabwe and South Africa for their continued commitment to finding sustainable solutions to the challenges facing migrants at the two countries’ borders.

 “Such forums are critical in addressing issues of irregular migration, migrant protection and fostering the harmonisation of migration management policies.”, Ms. Sanya said.

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