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Silence deafening for refugee seeking reunification with family

A mother of three who fled Burundi last year says she’s heard nothing about her bid to bring her husband and young children here, despite a pledge by the Canadian government to speed up the family reunification process.

Anitha Mahoro fled Burundi after her cousin, Burundian state TV reporter Christophe Nkezabahizi, Nkezabahizi’s wife and two children were shot dead by police in 2015 as violence flared over the controversial re-election of President Pierre Nkurunziza.

Mahoro ended up in Ottawa in September 2016, but left her husband and three children behind in a refugee camp in Rwanda.

“We had a house, we used to be a regular family. One morning everything went away. Now I have nothing — not my husband, not my children. Everything changed in my life,” said Mahoro.

Mahoro is studying early childhood education at La Cité collégiale while working part time in a daycare to be able to send money to her family in Rwanda.

“I would like to see them grow up safely in this country,” she said.

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