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condemns the Zimbabwe Consulate's insensitive handling of
passport applications Zimbabwe
Exiles Forum (ZEF)
September 21, 2010
Exiles Forum (ZEF) is greatly alarmed by the Zimbabwe Consulate's
demand for new requirements to passport applicants in South Africa.
ZEF has received numerous reports from applicants who were turned
away because they had no letters of employment demanded by the Consulate
for the issuance of a passport. Thousands of Zimbabweans are flocking
to the Johannesburg Consulate to seek passports after the South
African government requested all Zimbabweans in the country to legalise
their stay or face deportation after the 31st of December 2010.
that the Zimbabwe Consulate's demand for proof of employment
is a further infringement on the rights of Zimbabweans in the Diaspora
as a passport is a right deriving from citizenship, rather than
a privilege. ZEF Executive Director today urged all Zimbabweans
who have been turned away because of failure to produce letters
of employment to register with the Pretoria office, saying that
he believes an urgent court application or diplomatic appeal could
be made on behalf of those affected.
right to a passport goes to the heart of citizenship, which is a
fundamental right in terms of our Constitution. It is reprehensible
and unconscionable to deny a person his or her citizenship because
that person is not employed. This is not a manifestation of the
selfishness of capitalism; it is moral depravity!" said Mr
ZEF is also
concerned about the slow pace of processing passport applications
which has led to long queues of applicants, with some sleeping overnight
at the Consulate since Monday. Already, corruption has started as
some Zimbabweans who called the office indicated that they had to
pay R50 to jump the queue. The Consulate ordinarily closes at 1200
Hrs, and does not open on Wednesday, thus further affecting those
who come from afar places such as Cape Town and Durban. ZEF appeals
to the Consulate to extend operating hours and days, as well as
to ensure that other offices are opened in various parts of the
advises Applicants in Pretoria that applications for South African
permits are being processed at the Pretoria Show grounds, at TIRRO
Visit the ZEF
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