Border communities lose out on free movement

Zimbabweans living along the country’s borders are not benefiting from free border crossing permits they are entitled to, parliamentarians have said.

Members of Parliament with constituencies close to the country’s points of entry today said people in the areas were not enjoying free cross border movements, unlike in neighbouring countries.

According to bilateral relations enjoyed by Zimbabwe and its neighbouring states, people living along the borders would be issued with free border crossing permits.

“Holders of the permit must be allowed to travel across the borders within a 10 kilometre distance on foreign land without passports or other forms of travelling documents,” Principal Director with the Zimbabwe Immigration Authority, Clemence Masango, told the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee for Home Affairs.

Masango expressed surprise at revelations that intended beneficiaries along the borders were not benefiting from the facility.

He suspected that the provision could be stalled by non-availability of stationary and promised to investigate.

“The arrangement followed the realisation that people across borders were related and would need to interact regularly.

“For example, people would attend funerals and collect stray livestock across the borders often, and demanding that they produce a passport for such movements would be unreasonable,” Masango said.

According to Masango, all that was required was identification documents proving that one hailed from the area.

Post published in: News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *