Liberia Refugee Repatriation and Resettlement Commission Announces 80 Percent of Liberian Returnees From Ghana Suffer Drug Addiction

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Liberia Refugee Repatriation and Resettlement Commission Announces 80 Percent of Liberian Returnees From Ghana Suffer Drug Addiction
Liberia Refugee Repatriation and Resettlement Commission Announces 80 Percent of Liberian Returnees From Ghana Suffer Drug Addiction

Africa-Press – Liberia. The executive director of the Liberia Refugee Repatriation and Resettlement Commission (LRRRC), Patrick Worzie, has disclosed that more than half of the first batch of approximately 750 Liberian refugees from the Buduburam Refugee Camp in Ghana are drug addicts.

On Friday, May 24th, the first batch of Liberian refugees arrived in the country via the Loguatuo border.

The refugees, who arrived in 20 buses accompanied by cargo vehicles with their personal belongings, were part of the group whose structures were recently demolished by traditional rulers at Gomoa Buduburam.

This group forms part of a total of 4,300 Liberian refugees scheduled to return home between May and June this year. The repatriation is part of the LRRRC’s plans to bring Liberians back from the camp.

Mr. Worzie, during the arrival of the refugees, told FrontPage Africa that construction work on a temporary camp is underway in Sergeant Kollie Town, Bong County, where all 750 people will be temporarily sheltered.

Speaking at the Ministry of Information Culture and Tourism (MICAT) Special Press Briefing on Tuesday, May 28, 2024, Mr. Worzie told journalists that there are many drug addicts among the refugees from the Buduburam Refugee Camp in Ghana.

“The cases we brought into the country are not good people. We have said it openly. We have to work as a government because 80 percent of them are drug addicts,” Mr. Worzie said.

He added: “We are now doing the awareness, we will do their tests, those who are free will be integrated, and we will work with the task force to place them into rehab homes.”

He also announced that on board were 15 individuals suffering from mental illness, adding that his team will put them into rehab homes. “There are 183 children under the age of five. We have about 16 pregnant women on board. So, we are not counting on the government alone but also on our development partners to come and help us,” he said.

According to the LRRRC boss, his team will be going to Ghana to bring in the second batch of refugees from the Buduburam Refugee Camp next month.

Worzie added: “Holding everything constant, by May 31st, the second batch will depart from Ghana so we can live up to our agreement that the 1,539 Liberians will all move away from that camp and come back home.”

Drug addiction is a major problem in Liberia. The United Nations Population Fund estimates that at least 20% of young people in Liberia are using substances, including kush. President Joseph Boakai has declared drug addiction a national emergency.

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