Thursday, February 16, 2017

Deportees narrate ordeal in Mozambique

Tanzanians who were deported from Mozambique

Tanzanians who were deported from Mozambique arrive at the Mtwara regional commissioner’s office earlier this week. More than 130 Tanzanians have been kicked out of Mozambique since last weekend. PHOTO | HAIKA KIMARO 

By Haika Kimaro @TheCitizenTZ

Mtwara. Some of the 182 Tanzanians deported from Mozambique have narrated their ordeal in the southern African country.

They told The Citizen upon arrival in Mtwara that passports, money and other items were seized from them before they were locked up for three days prior to their deportation.

Ms Matilda Mwakipesile said she was at her business outlet when she was arrested by Mozambican police officers, who took money from her before detaining her.

“I had lived in Mozambique for six years. I sold cold drinks and food. It came as a surprise when police officers stormed my business premises and ordered me to get into their car, but I told them I had left my child at home. They drove me home where I picked up the child before I was driven to a police station where I was locked up for three days.

“We are asking the government to assist us. There are many Mozambicans living in Tanzania, but they are not being harassed like we were in their country,” Ms Mwakipesile said.

Mr Augustino Mayomba, another deportee, said he was summoned to a meeting where Tanzanians were told that they were required to leave the country immediately.

“They told us to leave the country. When one of us wanted to know why, they threatened to him. I have received a phone call informing me that all my belongings have been confiscated,” he said.

Ms Amina Mkeso, who was mourning the death of her mother in Tanzania, said she was deported as she prepared to travel to Tanzania after she was informed of her mother’s death.

“Police officers raided my house and ordered me to kneel down. I’m a shopkeeper and I had money in my shop, but They didn’t allow me to collect it. I’m asking the government here to help us...we have been victimised,’’ she said.

Acting Mtwara Regional Commissioner Avod Mmanda said there were claims some of those deported were raped, adding that Tanzanian authorities were investigating the allegations.

He added that the deportees were bundled into lorries and dumped at the border.