The Dilemma of Ghana-Based Liberian Refugees and the Challenges of Repatriation and Integration

Osman Antwi-Boateng, Mohammed Kamarideen Braimah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


In the aftermath of the Liberian civil war and the signing of the final peace agreement among the warring factions, the international community and host countries of Liberian refugees in the West African sub-region disproportionately pursued the policy of refugee repatriation to Liberia at the expense of other options such as integration and resettlement as a solution for the refugee problem. Using the Liberian refugees in the Buduburam refugee camp in Ghana as a qualitative case study, this research argues that the policy of repatriation has largely failed. The research arrives at this conclusion via the use of focus-group interviews of a cross-section of remaining Liberian refugees in the Buduburam camp. The research discovered that while the refugees are discontent with their current circumstances in Ghana, they are hesitant to return home due to unfavourable homeland conditions. The combination of both unfavourable host and homeland conditions constitutes 'intervening obstacles' that mitigate against repatriation and thus put the Ghana-based Liberian refugees in a dilemma. The research recommends the option of integration as a viable option that should be legislated and institutionalized to attract the necessary buy-in from the remaining refugees.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1185-1201
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Refugee Studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2021


  • Liberia
  • civil war
  • integration
  • refugees
  • repatriation
  • resettlement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Political Science and International Relations


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