Source: The Citizen (Dar es Salaam)
President John Magufuli yesterday ordered the suspension of naturalisation of Burundian refugees, and said those still in Tanzania should voluntarily return home.
Dr Magufuli issued the directive in Ngara District, which borders Burundi, after holding talks with his Burundian counterpart, Mr Pierre Nkurunziza.
Addressing a public rally that was also attended by President Nkurunziza, Dr Magufuli said granting Burundian refugees Tanzanian citizenship was to blame for many of them refusing to go back to Burundi, which, he added, was now peaceful.
“We have been good neighbours and have always welcomed refugees and even offered them citizenship. However, I now direct the Minister of Home Affairs to stop giving Tanzanian citizenship to Burundian refugees…they should now think about going back to their country, rebuilding its economy and fostering good relations between our two countries,” he said.
Earlier, Home Affairs minister Mwigulu Nchemba said Tanzania granted citizenship to 160,000 Burundian refugees in 2006 and 2007, adding that the number had since risen to over 200,000.