Zimbabweans given 12 months to leave South Africa

The cabinet of South Africa has given Zimbabweans 12 months to leave the country after deciding to no longer issue extensions to the Zimbabwean special dispensations.

Within the period of 12 month, the holders of the permits should apply for other permits appropriate to their particular status or situation.

“At the expiry of this 12-month period, those who are not successful will have to leave South Africa or be deported”.

The Cabinet said the first Zimbabwean special dispensation started in 2009 and was called the Dispensation for Zimbabwe Permit. It provided for the documentation of qualifying Zimbabweans for a five-year period.

In 2014, the dispensation was extended by three years and called the Zimbabwean Special Permit. The current ZEP was initiated in 2017 and comes to an end on 31 December 2021. Following its deliberations, Cabinet decided to no longer issue extensions to the Zimbabwean special dispensations. However, it decided on a 12 months grace period at the expiry of the current ZEP.

During this period, the holders of this permit should apply for other permits appropriate to their particular status or situation. At the expiry of this 12-month period, those who are not successful will have to leave South Africa or be deported.