Journal of Legal, Ethical and Regulatory Issues (Print ISSN: 1544-0036; Online ISSN: 1544-0044)


The Protection by Host States of the Right to Adequate Housing for Refugees: A Cameroonian Perspective.

Author(s): Cacilia Mesonge Kome*

Wars and crises have led to an increase in the number of refugees around the globe. Reports from the United Nations High Commission for Refugees show that there are about sixty five million refugees around the world as a result of crises. The first thing that comes to the mind of a refugee after displacement is where to lay his or her head. The right to adequate housing for refugees remains a very important right in the life of a refugee. Housing must be habitable, accessible and secured. The state has the responsibility to ensure that the rights of all persons are protected and this includes refugees. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights makes mention of the right to adequate housing in its Article 25. The aim of this research is to show that refugees have a right to adequate housing which must be protected. The research exposes the housing conditions of refugees and how these housing conditions can be improved upon. The methodology used in this research is the qualitative and quantitative methods of research. Laws, Conventions and statutes protecting the rights of refugees were consulted including other documents which helped in unravelling the rights of refugees both in international and national law. States on their part have an obligation to protect the right to adequate housing. Questionnaires were given out to refugees so that they could give their own opinion on their housing conditions. They provided answers to the various questions and these answers enabled the researcher to come up with a number of findings. The findings showed that refugees live under very deplorable housing conditions. Their right to adequate housing is not entirely protected as provided for in international legal instruments. It is recommended that, government and international organizations like the UNHCR should put in more measures to ensure that the right to adequate housing for refugees is protected. It was realized that, a lot still has to be done with regard to the right to adequate housing for refugees as provided for in international legal instruments.

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