It has already agreed to renew the permits, but a decision has not yet been made on how and where this would be done.
Zimbabwe’s Home Affairs Minister, Kembo Mohadi, was in South Africa last week to meet his SA counterpart, Malusi Gigaba, in Pretoria, to iron out the remaining grey areas of the permit renewal process.
According to South Africa’s new migration laws, a migrant work can only apply for a new permit or renewal of an old one from their home country. However, most Zimbabweans who use the DZP permits have indicated that it would be unworkable for them to do that, and many have vowed to stay put in their neighbouring country even after the expiry of their work, study and business permits that were issued freely in 2010.
Mohadi has also previously stated that the struggling Zimbabwean economy cannot accommodate the more than 275,000 Zimbabweans that would be required to throng their country of birth should the DZP fall under the new migration laws.
Already, some of the permits have expired, fuelling anxiety as some people are being harassed at their workplaces. Zimbabwe Community in South Africa chairperson Ngqabutho Mabhena, this week warned his countrymen to stop paying unscrupulous people who claimed they were helping them with the renewals.
“We have learnt that some Zimbabweans have paid up to R13,000 to try and have their DZP permits renewed, but they are yet to receive the work documents. This is a clear case of exploitation by some greedy agents,” said Mabhena. “There are also some agents that continue to fleece our people by charging them large amounts of money for permits that are later found not to be in the DHA system when they get to the border.”
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