AU Devises Guidelines on Return & Reintegration of Migrants

ADDIS ABABA – The African Union (AU) said it is preparing guidelines on return, readmission and reintegration of migrants to help member states establish better migration governance.

The guidelines, named Continental Guidelines on Return, Readmission and Reintegration (RRR), are a part of ongoing work by the AU to institute policy frameworks that guide member states as they establish better migration governance systems, said the Union.

According to the AU, the guidelines are built on UN migration agency or “IOM’s vast experience in return and reintegration in different contexts”.

These contexts include in countries in transition that face different challenges because of large flows of refugees and displaced persons, it added.

Aspiration two of the AU’s development blueprint, Agenda 2063 envisions an integrated and politically united continent, based on the ideals of Africa’s renaissance.

To achieve its ambitions on migration and mobility, the AU said it is working with different stakeholders, including the European Union (EU) and IOM.

“Reintegration is a complex process in which the country of origin, the returnees and the host communities face various challenges,” said Sabelo Mbokazi, Head of Labour, Employment and Migration at the AU.

“Making reintegration successful requires ample preparation and taking various aspects into account, including the socio-cultural, environmental, and economic context of the returnee”.

Last February, African migration experts met to finalize the draft guidelines in a meeting organized by AUC’s Humanitarian Affairs and Social Development Department (HHS) and UN’s International Organization for Migration (IOM).

Mbokazi said IOM provided technical review to the consultation on the draft AU Continental Guidelines.

“This contribution allowed the opportunity to make a comparative analysis of existing international frameworks on RRR within the context of IOM’s existing guidelines on RRR,” he added.

he EU-IOM Joint Initiative was launched in December 2016, and has also worked with target countries to develop national Standard Operating Procedures for Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration adapted to needs and context.