As Deadline Approaches Zimbabweans Face A Difficult Choice: Start From Zero In A Broken Country, Or Live Undocumented In SA

From 1 January 2023, thousands of Zimbabweans and their children will no longer be able to live, work and go to school legally in the republic By Tariro Washinyira “Surely the situation leaves me with no choice but to live under the radar,” says a maths teacher who has been living in South Africa since 2008 and now faces possible deportation with the scrapping of the Zimbabwean Exemption Permit. Photos: Tariro Washinyira Three Zimbabweans who held Zimbabwean Exemption Permits, which the South African government has now scrapped, share their anxiety and anguish as they face deportation, uprooting their lives and children and starting all over again in Zimbabwe, or continuing to live in South Africa as undocumented aliens. Shepherd Muroyiwa is one of about 178,000 Zimbabweans badly affected by the cabinet decision not to renew the Zimbabwe Exemption Permit (ZEP), which expired in December 2021. ZEP holders were given until the end of December 2022 to legalise their status in the country by other means.

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