PRETORIA AGREES TO RE-OPEN APPLICATION PROCESS FOR ZIMBABWEAN SPECIAL PERMIT HOLDERS

PRETORIA, The South African Cabinet has approved the re-opening of the application process for the current Zimbabwean Special Permit holders, under certain conditions.

The initial special dispensation for Zimbabweans was approved in April 2009 to document Zimbabwean nationals who were in South Africa illegally. Their permits expire on Dec 31, 2017.

The ZSP allows applications from Zimbabweans with a valid Zimbabwean passport, evidence of employment, business or accredited study and a clear criminal record and if successful grants them a permit to stay and work, study or run a business in South Africa. About 200,000 Zimbabweans in possession of the special permit are currently working or studying in the country.

The cut-of date for receiving ZSP applications was December 2014. The applications were received by VFS Global, a company appointed to implement the process of applying for the special permits, and adjudicated over by the Department of Home Affairs (Interior).

The special permits were introduced to allow Zimbabweans a three-year residency in South Africa. A similar initiative was granted for Basotho nationals who were in the country illegally. The Lesotho Special Permit allows for Lesotho nationals to live in South Africa legally.

At the time of the introduction of the LSP, the Department of Home Affairs said the special permits were only for those Lesotho citizens registered in the National Population Register of Lesotho.

South Africa granted an amnesty to Basotho in possession of fraudulently acquired documentation, so that they can surrender such documents, without the fear of arrest or deportation. Applicants receive amnesty letters as proof.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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