The Zimbabwean government has extended a helping hand to citizens holding Zimbabwe Exemption Permits (ZEPs) who wish to return home. Zimbabwe’s ambassador to South Africa, David Hamadziripi, announced that the government aims to assist 180,000 ZEP holders who want to return home before the expiration of their permits on June 30th.
Hamadziripi stated that the registration process will be conducted both online and in-person across South Africa, and will be open from February 2nd to March 3rd. The ambassador emphasized that the process is entirely voluntary and not meant to indirectly influence Zimbabweans in the upcoming elections.
“Migration is an individual and voluntary decision,” Hamadziripi said. “We wish to facilitate and assist Zimbabweans who wish to go back home. It is by no means to compel those who don’t wish to return home voluntarily.”
Zimbabwe respects the decision made by the South African government to terminate the ZEPs, but is preparing for the end of June in case the decision is upheld by the court. The government is also focused on minimizing difficulties for ZEP holders and will provide assistance to those who need it.
Hamadziripi added that the government wants to ensure that school-attending children can complete their studies without disruption. “We don’t wish to have their future disrupted in that manner,” Hamadziripi said.
The Zimbabwean government’s efforts to assist its citizens in returning home shows their commitment to the well-being of their citizens and their respect for the laws and decisions made by South Africa.