The Liberia Refugee Repatriation and Resettlement Commission (LRRRC) has refuted allegations made by a group claiming to be Sierra Leonean refugees that the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugee (UNHCR) through the commission has refused to resettle them.
LRRRC Deputy Executive Director for Operations, Alphonso W. Wallace, in an interview with the Liberia News Agency (LINA) said currently there are no Sierra Leonean refugees in the country under the LRRRC.
According to Wallace, the crisis in Sierra Leone ended long ago and as such the status of Sierra Leonean refugees in the country has expired.
He explained that the LRRRC presented the refugees with of the options of repatriation and local integration out of which most of them (refugees) elected to be locally integrated under which, according to him, the commission built houses for the refugees that decided to stay in Liberia.
Wallace indicated that the refugees that were integrated into the Liberian society were given the opportunity to do farming, work or business, among others things.
But, a group claiming to be Sierra Leonean refugees accused the LRRRC and the UNHCR of failing to resettle them.
The group head Abraham Sesay, during a peaceful protest at headquarters of the United Nations in Monrovia Thursday, told LINA that they have been in Liberia for the past 25 years and that the UNHCR and LRRRC have at no time encouraged resettlement for them to developed countries.
Wallace, however, pointed out that what the refugees are calling for is not the LRRRC responsibility, and added that the commission does not have the mandate to resettle anyone abroad.