- 1 The Zimbabwean Special Permit & what it means for
- 2 Zimbabweans in SA
- 3 Minister Gigaba to update the News reporters and media on the Zimbabwean Special Project.
- 4 Statement by the Minister of Home Affairs, Mr. Malusi Gigaba, in relation to the implementation of the Zimbabwean Special Permit on 25 September 2014,
- 5 What’s the Zimbabwean Specific Dispensation permit?
The Zimbabwean Special Permit & what it means for
Zimbabweans in SA
When the South African government declared more demanding new immigration rules earlier this year they started panic and doubt among many Zimbabwean expats living and working in the state. Some feared losing their jobs; others considered that it was nothing more than a ploy to force them outside.
“It is like they are pursuing others out, they are killing us,” a Zimbabwean immigrant told one paper.
On 12 August, the Home Affairs minister in South Africa, Malusi Gigaba belatedly attempted to calm those concerns, declaring that a fresh permit was created to re-register Zimbabwean nationals. Maybe most significantly, they are not going to have to return to Zimbabwe to apply for it.
Holders of the brand new Zimbabwean Specific Dispensation permit will likely not be ineligible for continue in South Africa until the end of 2017.
Minister Gigaba to update the News reporters and media on the Zimbabwean Special Project.
Statement by the Minister of Home Affairs, Mr. Malusi Gigaba, in relation to the implementation of the Zimbabwean Special Permit on 25 September 2014,
Here are complete remarks of Gigaba:
Good morning to everyone.
On the 12th of August, 2014, I announced the establishment of the Zimbabwean Special Permit (ZSP) of 2014 allowing Zimbabwean holders of this special permit to work, conduct business or study in South Africa for three years, until the end of December 2017.
As explained then, only the approximately 245 000 holders of the Dispensation for Zimbabweans Project (DZP) are eligible to apply for the ZSP.
As the Department of Home Affairs will begin accepting applications via the website for the ZSP on October 1, 2014, we would like to take this opportunity to update stakeholders and the public on the implementation of the ZSP.
In short, the Department is ready.
We, along with our application processing partner VFS, have completed all the necessary preparations to process all prospective applications for the ZSP.
All the 10 ZSP Application Centres have been secured by VFS.
These include totally new centres in the provinces of Gauteng (Midrand), Western Cape (Cape Town), Limpopo (Polokwane) and KwaZulu-Natal (Durban).
The remaining six centres are in George, Port Elizabeth, Kimberley, Bloemfontein, Nelspruit and Rustenburg.
These six will be operating from the existing visa and permit centres.
Capacity has been set aside within our Permitting section to be able to process the applications.
Currently, there are 120 dedicated staff members who will be dealing with ZSP adjudication.
From October 1st, Zimbabweans will be able to apply online as per the initial plan.
To this end, a website will be up and running to allow this process to take off.
The website address to be used when lodging applications will be http://www. vfsglobal .com /zsp/ southafrica.
In response to concerns about computer literacy and internet access, we will monitor this closely to see if these become issues, and mitigate accordingly.
We are confident that internet access is sufficiently high in SA.
As for applicants knowing how to actually complete their application, we will work with groups of stakeholders such as this one to publicize and demonstrate the correct procedure.
We explained previously that we would announce the application fee, after finalizing the costs associated in the administration of the ZSP.
In line with the ‘user pays’ principle, and like the vast majority of countries, we charge applicants for visas and permits for the cost of administering them.
The application fee for the ZSP is set at R870.
We believe this fee is reasonable, when compared with visas and permits of similar duration.
It is also reasonable, when considering the infrastructure we are setting up to allow applicants to apply here in South Africa, without having to leave the country as would usually be required, with associated travel costs for applicants.
On other matters,
We would finally like to take this opportunity to update South Africans on visa requirements for holders of British Official and Diplomatic Passports. As from the first of September 2014, the department began implementation of visa requirements to British Diplomatic and Official Passport-holders.
This was done as a reciprocal measure to the British implementing a visa requirement to South African diplomatic, official and ordinary passport holders.
The department, and government at large, has attempted, over the years, to persuade British authorities to review their visa requirements. At our end, we will continue to engage with our British counterparts to change their stance on this matter. Obviously, on our part, the first is a full exemption for all South African passport holders, but in the least, we can start with exempting the Diplomatic and Official Passport-holders.
We must emphasize that our requirement to British is limited to Diplomatic and Official Passport-holders. Ordinary British passport holders such as tourists will remain unaffected by this new requirement.
Thank you very much for your attention.
What’s the Zimbabwean Specific Dispensation permit?
The Zimbabwean Specific Dispensation permit (ZSP) is the successor to a permit issued as section of the Home Affairs section’s somewhat clumsily named dispensation of Zimbabweans Job (DZP) which was executed in April 2009.
The DZP’s purpose was to produce a record of Zimbabweans, who had, until then, been living illegally in South Africa. It was, likewise, meant to offer an amnesty to Zimbabweans, who’d been using deceptive South African identity documents. Most of the Zimbabweans living in South Africa had fled the political violence, instability and economic crises that had dogged their home country for at least a decade.
As a portion of the DZP, the Home Affairs department waived application fees and some permit conditions. Zimbabweans were also permitted to submit their applications without all the normal supporting files, like passports, to speed the procedure up. (In many cases, those records were lost in the scramble to security in South Africa.)
Applications for the first DZP licenses may be submitted from 1 September 2010 to 31 December 2010. Throughout that window Home Affairs had received 294,511 applications (242,731 were allowed, with 51,780 either rejected or not finalised) for DZP licenses study, to work or conduct company in South Africa. These were legal for four years from the date of a problem.
All DZP licenses will be considered null and void from 31 December this year.
What occurs when the present DZP permits expire?
DZP permit holders who want to stay in South Africa have two options. Should they fulfill the conditions for a routine company, work or study visas they are able to apply for them. However, they should do this in Zimbabwe.
The next alternative would be to apply for the recently introduced Zimbabwe Special Dispensation Permit (ZSP). Only applicants who are on the DZP database – even when they were refused a DZP permit – may apply for the ZSP.
No new applications will probably be considered, and applicants must have a Zimbabwean passport that is legal and evidence of employment, company or accredited study.
The ZSP is going to be valid for three years. After that time is upward, all Zimbabweans with ZSP licenses will likely have to apply for regular work, study or company visas to be able to continue and will need to return to Zimbabwe to do that.
Applying for a ZSP permit.
From 1 October 2014, applicants will need to apply online through VFS Global, a worldwide business the government has contracted to process the applications. Four new VFS offices will soon be started in Durban, Cape Town, Polokwane and Midrand to handle the large quantities of applicants anticipated, as well as the existing centers in Port Elizabeth, George, Kimberley, Bloemfontein, Nelspruit and Rustenburg.
The form is accessible from www.vfsglobal.com/zsp/southafrica as well as the price of the permit is R870 per application for an adult; R800 for a minor. The sum may be paid in the VFS bank account or with a debit or credit card at a VFS Global office.
Applicants must fill in an Internet form and submit it before 31 December. Afterwards, applicants have to telephone the VFS Global contact centre ( 27 87 825 0675) to schedule an appointment before 30 April 2015, while allowing enough time to get supporting files. Rescheduling will simply be permitted under exceptional conditions.
At the appointment, applicants should submit their application in person and digital photo, and a digital finger scan will probably be shot. These records have to be made at their interview:
The finished on-line form is must as handwritten forms won’t be taken,
Appointment acknowledgement (SMS from VFS call centre or letter),
initial records for confirmation while submitting accredited photocopies,
Copies of preceding and passport visas/licenses,
Payment receipt for every single applicant.
Home Affairs About Police Record
Applicants must really have a clean police record but, according to Home Affairs spokesman Mayihlome Tshwete. They are not going to have to get a police clearance certificate themselves. VFS Global submits them to the South African Police Service for clearance and will compile a listing of names.
A ZSP permit is not going to be automatically issued as the application will be adjudicating by the Department of Home Affairs.
Get special questions to the bureau at 27 87 825 0675 or firstname.lastname@example.org. (VFS warns they are experiencing high call volumes and requested that applicants consult with their Frequently Asked Questions page.)
Attorneys for Human Rights (LHR) are accessible to help and inform applicants.