d-day for refugees

DEVASTATED: Foreign nationals at the Rand Airport shelter for displaced of people in Germiston say the donations given to them are not enought to help them rebuild thier lives. Pic. Peter Mogaki. 10/09/2008. © Sowetan.
DEVASTATED: Foreign nationals at the Rand Airport shelter for displaced of people in Germiston say the donations given to them are not enought to help them rebuild thier lives. Pic. Peter Mogaki. 10/09/2008. © Sowetan.

Namhla Tshisela

Namhla Tshisela

The government has given about 300 foreign nationals until Monday to leave the refugee shelter at Rand Airport in Germiston, Ekurhuleni.

The immigrants had received cash donations from the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) on behalf of the UN High Commission for Refugees to cover for accommodation for when they leave the shelters.

"We are giving them until the weekend to finalise their arrangements," provincial government spokesman Thabo Masebe said yesterday.

JRS project director Thabile Maphosa said the donations, ranging between R750 and R1500, were contributions to victims of xenophobia. He added that those who had received money could not remain at the shelters.

Allowances are given in order of preference to refugees, asylum-seekers, Zimbabweans and those fleeing persecution and political instability in their home countries.

Maphosa said the immigrants had pleaded for more time to find accommodation.

A resident at one of the shelters said Mozambicans had not received any money.

Others eligible for the assistance also complained that the money was "too little".

"We will need more money to eat and to rebuild our shacks," said Mozambican national Saymore Makati.

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