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CAR: Ex-Seleka militants uncomfortable with social reintegration delay

CAR: Ex-Seleka militants uncomfortable with social reintegration delay

Central African Republic

Close to 1000 ex-Seleka rebels camped at Beal in Bangui are still impatiently waiting for their social reintegration.

The former miltants have expressed the wish for the process to be accelerated.

“We are for peace. We want peace to return in the country. Secondly, we would like that the process should be faster b so that we we can be reintegrated into the army. And for those who opted for civilian life, they should be allowed to do so and also given a job,” ex militant, Béni Guetemale said.

It is therefore important for the government to act fast because the rebels are willing to maintain peace.

According to the disarmament and social reintegration programme launched in 2013 by Central African authorities, the ex-rebels who voluntarily surrendered their weapons should benefit from this procedure as they are increasingly facing hardship in their daily struggles.

“Some people say that it is necessary to carry out a forced disarmament. But I say that here in Bangui we have handed over all the weapons and I have papers which attest to that. Where will they find the weapons. We have handed over all the weapons. We don’t know about those out of Bangui, but those of us in Bangui have taken our responsibility to do so voluntarily. It is therefore important for the government to act fast because the rebels are willing to maintain peace,” a former rebel identified as General Karim Mahamat said.

Another former militant complained about their feeding while in the camp: “We are provided food once a week every Monday. Sincerely speaking, this is not enough for a week.”

Central African Republic authorities say they need three more years to carry out this reintegration with about 7000 former rebels involved.

The operation conducted jointly by the international forces and the government will be done at an estimated cost of about 30 million US dollars.

Neighbouring countries have promised to provide assistance estimated at about 9 million dollars.

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