Over 5000 Zimbabweans stranded in South Africa cry for help
The Zimbabwe Consulate in South Africa has revealed that over 5 800 stranded Zimbabweans have appealed for assistance from the government as they feel the pinch of the national lockdown.
At least 2191 people have applied for assisted repatriation back to Zimbabwe.
More than 3640 people have applied to receive food packs instead. The lockdown has been hard on the poor and those who work in the informal sector and those who earn money daily.
The Zimbabwe Consulate revealed this in an update dated 30 April 2020. Here is the full update.
Official Update: 30 April 2020
Further to our communication of 13 and 17 April 2020 respectively, inviting Zimbabweans facing difficulties due to the lockdown restrictions in South Africa to submit details via the provided channels; please receive the following update.
1. As of 19 April 2020, 839 people had registered for assisted repatriation back to Zimbabwe, while 2249 people signaled their desire to receive food packs instead.
2. As of 30 April 2020, an additional 1352 and 1391 people had requested for repatriation and food parcels respectively.
3. This brings the total number of people in need of assistance to 5831. (2191 requesting for repatriation and 3640 in need of food assistance).The numbers continue increase as more people continue to register.
4. The registration link, https://www.surveymonkev.com/r/MLSZDXX remains open.
5. The Embassy and the two Consulates are currently engaging the South African Government to obtain the necessary clearances and authorizations to undertake the repatriation process in compliance with the lockdown regulations in the country.
6. Consultations are also underway with regards to the logistical arrangements for the assisted repatriation including funding, reception and quarantine facilities upon crossing into Zimbabwe.
7. Travel dates, including all the logistical arrangements will be communicated through the usual official channels once the said consultations and processes have been finalized.
8. While it is normal for people to have expected a quick finalization of the process, this has not been possible due the above mentioned broad based consultations and the careful considerations being taken at every stage of the planning process.
Meanwhile, we have received messages that some people wish to repatriate at their expense. Please note the following:
1. For those who have private means of transport ; separately submit the following details to the emails below depending on your location:
Name(s); Passport number(s); Passport Issue and Expiry Dates; Age; Local Contact Details; Current Address; Mode of transport (vehicle reg number(s) and particulars of the driver; Reasons for visit to South Africa and Intended dates of from South Africa.
Embassy: [email protected]
Cape Town Consulate: [email protected]
Johannesburg Consulate: [email protected]
Please note that the lockdown regulations regarding vehicle carrying capacities must be strictly adhered to.
2. For those who wish to use public transport , please be advised that consultations are currently underway with bus operators with a view to agree on the costs, payment methods, bus time tables, pick up points and general conditions for the trips.
Dialogue is also ongoing with the South African Government to obtain the requisite clearances. (A separate announcement on the logistics and payment methods will be made once decisions have been made).