Armed ViolenceNews

3,023 Former Rebels Disarmed, Demobilised In Central African Republic In Three Years

The DDRR project has been helping the Central African Republic reintegrate former rebels.

Three thousand and twenty-three former combatants drawn from 13 armed groups active in the Central African Republic have been disarmed and demobilised since 2018, a government official said. 

Samuel Touatena, the Coordinator-General of Disarmament, Demobilisation, Reintegration and Repatriation (DDRR) in CAR said ex-combatants were disarmed in Bangui the national capital, Bimbo, Begoua, and the northeast defense zones as well as in the northwest of the country.

“We have disarmed 3,023 combatants who came in from 13 armed groups except the UPC which has not yet presented its elements, though the UPC regularly takes part in different meetings but has not yet presented its elements for disarmament,” the DDRR Coordinator revealed. 

“From what I have here, 2,497 arms, 1,223 chargers, 1,308 explosives, one mine and 111,918 ammunition have been collected.”

Concerning the repatriations of ex-fighters, the DDRR Coordinator General said  that much is left to be done as the task is complex.

“We have received only one stranger who presented himself. He is a Malian and we have tried to see what we can do about his case with the minister of public security,”he disclosed.

He added that the phase of disarmament and demobilisation has permitted his outfit not only to recover arms in the hands of ex-combatants but also to participate in their socio-economic integration and to the return of peace in the concerned zones.

It is projected that the DDRR programme would eventually disarm 5,000 ex-combatants. Already, of the 3,023 disarmed, 817 have been integrated into the national defense and security forces.

The next phase of the programme would target Bria, Ouadda-Djalle, Amdofock, Sam Ouandja, Batangafo, Markounda and Kabo.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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