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Watch: Home Affairs Minister says termination of ZEP good for Zimbabweans

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The Department of Home Affairs (DHA) minister, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi says the termination of the Zimbabwe Exemption Permit (ZEP) programme is for the benefit of the permit holders themselves.

The government will terminate the permits at the end of June, affecting roughly 180,000 Zimbabweans living in South Africa.

Under the dispensation permit, holders are not eligible for any other type of visa, including work, scarce skills or permanent residency.

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Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi says this means many of them are perpetually trapped in a temporary system with no means to better their lives.

“I don’t think it’s fair, even for us South Africans, to want people to remain temporary forever when their lives are moving.”

Read | Judge allows ATDF-ASA to intervene in the Helen Suzman Foundation ZEP review application

Motsoaledi said that the termination of the ZEP gives the holders an opportunity to move to other visas which offer better conditions as compared to the temporary permit.

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He adds the department is assisting many permit holders to apply for waivers which exempt them from having certain requirements when they eventually apply for the visa of their choice.

He noted that a number of ZEP holders had attained qualifications that would qualify them for other visas such as the scarce skills visa but ZEP conditions would not allow them to transfer to such visas.

Watch the video below from eNCA for more details from Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi:

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