ADDIS ABABA — More than 27,700 Ethiopian migrants have been repatriated home since April this year, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said.
Between April 1 and August 27, Ethiopia received over 27,700 returnees. The returnees include 6,944 from Djibouti, 6,696 from Somalia, and 5,329 from Sudan, the UN migration agency said in its latest COVID-19 response update for Ethiopia on Saturday.
The IOM also noted that it has registered some 912 new migrant returnees in the last week in Ethiopia. As the designated lead agency for supporting the Ethiopian government in the management of migrant returnees, the IOM stressed that it has continued to support the government in coordinating support for quarantine facilities in Addis Ababa and the regions, with 35 in total.
The UN migration agency also revealed that it has provided COVID-19 screening for 2,732 individuals in quarantine facilities and government health posts. In coordination with Ethiopia’s Disaster Prevention and Food Security Program Coordination Office, the IOM has also provided orientation on COVID-19 preventative measures and provided personal protective equipment to volunteers working in arrival areas for migrant returnees.
Amid the rapid spread of COVID-19 in the East African country and the eventual preventive measures to contain the spread of the virus, the UN migration agency provides direct assistance to returnee migrants in quarantine facilities, including registration, food, water and onward transportation assistance, it was noted. It also distributes non-food items in quarantine facilities in the capital, Addis Ababa and across various regional states, including soaps, dignity kits, medications, kitchen sets, clothes, bed sheets and mattresses.
As of Saturday morning, Ethiopia’s confirmed COVID-19 cases reached 48,140 as the death toll rose to 758, according to the Ethiopian Ministry of Health.
According to the ministry, the number of recoveries is also increasing as some 17,415 patients who tested positive for COVID-19 had so far recovered.