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Former Burundian Refugees Head Home from Tanzania

The Return


Busloads of returnees arriving in Burundi’s Musenyi transit centre from Mtabila refugee camp in Tanzania. The new arrivals are escorted by a delegation of UNHCR and members of the Burundian government.

Getting Into The System


They are registered upon arrival so that they can get national identity cards and other required documents.

Getting Back On Their Feet

 After registration, returnees like this man collect a one-month food package provided by WFP.

A Hearty Meal

WFP also provides the returnees with cooked meals before they start the last leg home.

Packing Up

Their belongings are packed into trucks that will take them back to their areas of origin.

Heading Home

…And off they go….

His First Time in His Motherland

Cyriaque Ndayikengurukiye, 18, was born in Mtabila camp in 1994, a year after his parents arrived in Tanzania, fleeing Burundi’s 1993 civil war.  He hardly speaks a word of his parent’s native language, Kirundi. He recalls his parents collecting food twice a month. He learned later the food came from WFP.

Cyriaque's Guitar

WFP’s rations have been useful in other ways. Cyriaque made his guitar from an oil can provided by the organization. Besides music, Cyriaque likes soccer. In fact, he prefers to be called Beckam!

Around 35,000 former refugees are returning home to Burundi after spending nearly two decades in Tanzania. Their homecoming comes after Tanzanian authorities ordered the closure of the last Burundian refugee camp, Mtabila, by the end of 2012.