The Department of Immigration Services in the Northern Region will on 21 June embark on a three-day awareness campaign aimed at sensitizing local communities on the dangers of aiding aliens enter into the country.
The campaign which will end on 23rd of June is targeting border districts of Karonga and Chitipa which are among those that have registered numerous cases of illegal immigrants entering Malawi.
The exercise comes at a time when many immigrants have entered the country illegally using uncharted routes, mostly with the aid of Malawian citizens.
Public Relations Officer for the department, Blackwell Lungu, said what has prompted the campaign is the ignorance most Malawians have on consequences of assisting or hosting illegal immigrants in the country.
“Information gathered so far has shown that most people aiding illegal immigrants do not even know it is a crime. Due to ignorance, they find themselves giving shelter to the immigrants without knowing that doing so is illegal that is why we decided to provide civic education to them in relation to the law,” said Lungu.
The PRO said that most Malawians are friendly towards foreigners without knowing they have entered the country illegally.
“Malawians consider it as humane such that they even prepare food for the illegal immigrants,” he said.
Assistance rendered to illegal immigrants by Malawians range from provision of food, shelter and even transporting them through the country.
Lungu said the Immigration Department saw that community sensitization was an initiative that would assist to curb cases of illegal immigrants in the country’s border districts.
From Karonga and Chitipa the department will take the activity to Nkhata Bay and Mzimba districts.