Zimbabweans in South Africa facing serious chaos as the government cancelled the Zimbabwe Exemption Permit (ZEP). The bad news came into the ears of many Zimbabweans who are living in South Africa as they wont be allowed to extend their permits come wen they expire. As of now the Zimbabwean embassy has held a Press Conference to communicate the way forward on taking Zimbabweans back home safely.
The government of Zimbabwe is more than open to accept their citizens and they said the country is open for them. This is however the opposite of Zimbabweans who are to come home and their families. Most people in Zimbabwe are going abroad to South Africa and some to the United States running away from the harsh conditions in the country.
The decision by the South African government to terminate the ZEP on 30 June 2023 will affect over 180 000 Zimbabweans. This is a significant figure to Zimbabwe considering the high unemployment in the country.
Zimbabweans react to the Zimbabwe Exemption Permit cancellation
Since the announcement, many Zimbabweans who are affected have been crying and they do not know what will happen to them in the future. They don’t even know if they will get jobs back home.
This had also brought a mixed reaction to people in Zimbabwe. The majority of the people are excited that these people should come and participate in the coming general elections rather than running away from their national problems. Another sector of people are afraid of the effects of increased unemployment like crime and prostitution. Indeed, no one is ever sure of what Zimbabwe will be with such a big number of people coming back into the country.
Details of the Zimbabwe Exemption Permit
The Zimbabwe Exemption Permit is a special type of visa issued by the South African government to Zimbabwean citizens. This permit allows Zimbabweans to stay in South Africa for up to three months without the need for a visa. The permit is issued by the South African Department of Home Affairs and is valid for a period of three months from the date of issue.
This permit can be renewed for a further period of three months, provided that the permit holder is able to demonstrate that they are able to support themselves financially during their stay in South Africa. The Zimbabwe Exemption Permit does not provide the holder with the right to work in South Africa, but it does allow them to travel freely within the country.