Shift Rohingya Camps, Cox’s Bazar Economy and Ecology in Danger


Dhaka 9th November 2017. Today sixteen civil society organization and non-government organization from Cox’s Bazar who has formed the Cox’s Bazar CSO-NGO Forum (CCNF) organized a press conference in Dhaka Reporters Unity. They have urged government for enhanced involvement of UNHCR in the Rohingya crisis and also urged for de-concentration of Rohingya refugee camps and shifted to other districts, as the economy and ecology of the district is in danger. The press conference was moderated by Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of COAST also Co-Chair of CCNF, other speakers of the press conference was, Mr. Rahshed from Nongar, Mr. Jashim from ADAB, Mr. Aminur Rasul Babul from Unnayan Dhara and Mr. Moqbul from COAST too.
The group has distributed a position paper which contains 41 demands with analysis, divided in nine sections. The sections are (i) Cox’s Bazar demography is in imbalance, shifts Rohingya in other places in ensuring their basic rights, (ii) Government must take full control of the relief operation, position and office of Relief Commissioner have to be upgraded, (iii) Ecology and economy of the districts are in threats, need study and recovery effort, invest for host community too, (iv) Confusion and complexity in coordination and control, bring UNHCR as leader in the board, (v) Tackle the possible factors of terrorism, provide space to propagate alternative philosophy of human right and secularism, (vi) UN agencies and INGOs must withdraw from direct operation, they must respect their commitment toward localization and accountability to reduce their transaction cost, (vii) Strengthen long term political campaign to bring the Myanmar government and armies in the international court of justice in the Hague as like what happened for Rwanda and Czechoslovakia, (viii) Stop visibility competition in relief work, and (ix) Respect convention of the Rights of the Child in rehabilitation of Rohingya child.
Mr. Rashed of Nongar Cox’s Bazar said that, due to Rohingya influx there will be total population increase in Cox’s Bazar district by the end of year will be 62 % while in the country is only 13 %, there are huge Rohingys in the town and also along the side of Marine drive, they should be shifted immediately. He also said, government and civil society must take steps on campaign to bring the Myanmar government and army to the international court of justice in the Hague for genocide. Mr. Moqbul of COAST demanded studies of Rohingya impact in natural resources, health and economy of Cox’s Bazar then there should be announcement of recovery steps from government before the next budget. He also urged for minimum 20 % development investment from aid money for the host community.
Mr. Aminur Rasul Babul of Unnayan Dhara said that, district administration and Rohingya relief operation should be separated, Relief Commissioner Office should be upgraded to “Secretary” level, and army officials should be deputed in the office for information, monitoring and coordination. He also said that UNHCR should be bring to take lead of this Rohingya relief operation as they are mandated by UN, UNHCR should have been involved in bio metric registration too. Mr. Jashim of ADAB, said that there should electric lightening in the camp, allowing cultural groups who promote secularism, humanism and local culture so that Rohingyas will not be abuse by religious terrorism. They also urged government for long term education plan in this regard.
Rezaul Karim Chowdury the Co-Chair of CCNF and Executive Director of COAST said that UN agencies and international non-government organization must withdraw from direct operation they should work through partnership with local non-government organization as they are committed for localization and to reduce their transaction cost. He urged them to use Bangla in their day to day communication, they should publish their aid data for public monitoring and adopt complain response mechanism in their work process to ensure accountability in local level.
Please download related paper [Bangla Press] [English Press] [Position paper details Bangla] [Position Paper short Bangla] [English Position Paper]