More Than 217 Million Birr Grant Agreement Signed to Support Vulnerable Returnees

Addis Ababa : Ministry of Labors and Social Affairs has signed over 217 million Birr grant agreements with Danish Refugee Council, the International Labor Organization, and International Organization for Migration to support 30,000 vulnerable returnees from neighboring and Middle Eastern countries due to COVID-19.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Labor and Social Affairs Minister Ergogie Tesfaye said the support will help to address the problems of the returnees.

“The desperate situation of migrants is posing enormous challenges to the Ethiopian Government,” she noted.

According to her, migrants returning home, especially in such unexpected circumstances of COVID-19, often face enormous challenges like lack of decent livelihood opportunities and stigmatization.

Within the context of the current crisis, the ministry has solicited support from the Danish Refugee Council, ILO, and IOM to undertake the successful reintegration of returnees.

The minister stated that the 217.3 million Birr will help to address the existing problems of the returnees by providing immediate assistance upon their return home through cash transfer to ensuring long-term social and economic reintegration and empowerment.

IOM-Ethiopia Chief of Mission, Maureen Achieng said the framework signed could further strengthen in ensuring that the return of Ethiopians to their country is well managed, sustainable, and contributes to the overall development goals of Ethiopia.

The agreement can play a vital role in enhancing cooperation in providing assistance to returnees, including those who have come back to Ethiopia amid the COVID-19 pandemic, by supporting them with their immediate basic needs as they get back to their home after a challenging journey, Achieng added.

The grant agreement was signed between Labor and Social Affairs Minister Ergogie Tesfaye, IOM-Ethiopia Chief of Mission Maureen Achieng, ILO representative Aida Awel, and Danish Refugee Council Ethiopia Director Esther Lee Stewart.

Of the stated amount Birr 100.3 million was donated  by Danish Refugee Council, 83.7 million Birr by ILO, and Birr 33.3 million by IOM.



Source: Ethiopia News agency

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