News / Africa

S. Africa’s New Immigration Laws Worry Zimbabwean Immigrants

South Africa’s Tough New Immigration Laws Worry Zimbabwean Immigrantsi
X
June 13, 2014 12:08 PM
Four years ago, the South African government granted amnesty to hundreds of thousands of Zimbabweans -- who had fled to that country seeking asylum from political violence at home. But now, the Pretoria government is tightening its immigration laws -- a move which could make it difficult for many Zimbabweans to remain. For VOA, Thuso Khumalo has more from Johannesburg.
Four years ago, the South African government granted amnesty to hundreds of thousands of Zimbabweans -- who had fled to that country seeking asylum from political violence at home.  But now, the Pretoria government is tightening its immigration laws -- a move which could make it difficult for many Zimbabweans to remain. 

Turmoil in Zimbabwe over the years has forced huge numbers of Zimbabweans -- to flee into neighboring South Africa.
 
Some officials estimate that two million Zimbabweans now live in the country.

But life here has not been easy. Those who fled political violence have to line up for days -- sometimes even at night -- to apply for asylum.

Many of these immigrants say tough new immigration laws have made their lives difficult.

Under the new laws announced in May, some 300,000 Zimbabweans who were given amnesty permits are now required to return home to extend their visa.

Zimbabwean immigrant Dorcas Mero -- who is now bedridden after a serious road accident --said the new law has brought her life to a standstill. “I’m worried and I’m afraid as well, if they deport me in this situation, I’m afraid,” she said.
 
Her husband, Gift Nhidza, who was injured in the same accident, is in a similar predicament. “I’m very bitter about these new laws and I think the new minister of Home Affairs should revisit and engage the people about their problems,” he added.

Bishop Paul Verryn, of the Central Methodist Church in Johannesburg, compares the new immigration laws to those from South Africa's discriminatory past. "It feels as if we are dealing with the same kind of complications as we dealt with, with the past laws in the old apartheid era,” he explained. 

These immigrants say their fate is now in the hands of the South African government.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: kollen from: kwaMashu
July 06, 2014 4:14 AM
why zimbabwean at least they got permit,why cant you do the same to the Nigerian,malawian,congolese,its like you are holding a grudge.there are lots of foreigners who are walking freely without even a permit but now you puting a hard blow to zim pple who are legally staying,but dont forget that you are also a human being like the zimbabwean next to you,I will never allow you to stand on my way,and noone will go back,what we did to apply here is the same way we are doing.do you think the our emloyer will wait fo us once we go back to zim and who will give me money to come back,YOU ARE TOO HARSH to innocent pple.

by: collen from: kenfield
July 05, 2014 4:10 PM
what about our pakage since we were employed pwerminantly,our kids with the south african woman,our UIF and our persion,plus we are not scared bcose the day i came here you didnt gave me money.you deport me today i came back the following day,i cant let my family die when i know where i can get food,its going to b a war watch my words,we are there one supporting our parents no mugabe or tsvangirai those are there to see us suffer,

by: Revai from: Scotland
June 22, 2014 1:18 AM
Dzokerai kumba
In Response

by: Patty Shayne from: UK
June 22, 2014 4:07 AM
Easy for u to say. Why don't you go back home as well?

by: prince from: jhb
June 16, 2014 4:23 AM
Such is life to us zimbabweans ,it never rains it pours,now it will be back to border jumping! We have to survive ,back home things r bad.

by: Sammy
June 13, 2014 2:27 PM
Briefly it would help if VOA mentioned what these new regulations were.
In Response

by: Patty Shayne from: UK
June 22, 2014 4:02 AM
True, I agree with you Sammy
In Response

by: thandeka from: jhb
June 14, 2014 2:05 AM
We have too much going on to us South Africans alone we don't need to deal with Zimbabwe as well, they should go back to their country. I wish SA was strict as Botswana

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More