The future of thousands of Zimbabweans hangs in the balance as the permit expires in December. To acquire a work permit in South Africa, Zimbabweans will have to prove that they possess a special skill or they will have to apply for an exemption from the labour department. It’s four months until Zimbabweans in South Africa under the Zimbabwe Exemption Permits (ZEP) dispensation will be deemed illegal immigrants, after the South African government decided to discontinue these permits.
Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said that they have hired private lawyers to address backlogs as the expiry of Zimbabwean exemption permit looms.
The future of thousands of Zimbabweans hangs in the balance as the permit expires in December.
In November last year, government announced the decision to discontinue the permit by December this year after its initial introduction in 2009.
That means that Zimbabweans will have to legitimise their stay through other forms of residency authorisation.
To acquire a work permit in South Africa, Zimbabweans will have to prove that they possess a special skill or they will have to apply for an exemption from the labour department.
That is where many are stuck as the department is dealing with backlogs.
When asked about this, Home Affairs Minister Motsoaledi has chosen to remain tight-lipped.
“What I can tell you is that we have put together a team that is led by the former DG in the Presidency, Dr Lubisi. We put him together with a team of lawyers from the private sector, who will sit everyday to process these documents to make sure that we don’t develop any backlog,” the minister said.
The Helen Suzman Foundation is approaching the courts to challenge the abolishment of the Zimbabwean exemption permit certificate, something the Home Affairs Department is determined to defend.
Source – news24