By Mumtaz Moosa Saley
Bangladesh’s refugee commissioner has stated that thousands of Rohingya, currently living in the border refugee camps, have agreed to move to the island despite the fear of the island flooding during the monsoon period.
Around 800 000 Rohingya had fled Myanmar in August 2017, joining 200,000 refugees already in makeshift tents in Cox Bazar.
For a very long time, the Government wanted to move a small portion of the Rohingya Refugee to the islet, in the hope that it would take the pressure off the crowded border camps. To this day there is an estimated one million refugees in the camps.
Mahbub Alam, a Bangladesh official has told news agencies that around 6000 refugees are willing to relocate, the relocation process can start possibly by the first week of December.
Human rights groups have called against the move, as the island which emerged only two decades ago, might not be able to stand the violent storms and the monsoon season. The island is an hour boat ride from the main island. Although this could be a solution to housing the Rohingya, one has to ask about the safety as visible erosion can be seen on the lands and in the past century, the island itself has seen some of the worst cyclones in the area.
Rohingya people remain stateless and no country is willing to accept them, nor are the children allowed an education.