Opposition MDC Alliance has expressed concern over the plight of Zimbabweans living in South Africa following recent pronouncement by the Southern African country that it will not be extending the Zimbabwe Exemption Permits (ZEP) which are expiring on December 31.
In a statement, MDC Alliance secretary for Diaspora Affairs and Mobilisation, Clifford Hlatywayo said the party respects South Africa’s decision.
“We respect the decision of the South African government and we appreciate South Africa’s help. The nation has repeatedly supported Zimbabwean citizens who were fleeing poverty, injustice and corruption. Our people left the country in search of better opportunities and jobs following the socio-economic and political crisis created by the regime in Harare.
“As a social democratic party whose core value is to champion a better society for the people of Zimbabwe, we are extremely concerned with the plight of our brothers and sisters who have become perpetual victims of the authorities that deliberately renege on their responsibility to serve and protect the people,” said Hlatywayo
He said poor policies by the Zanu PF led government had driven citizens out of the country and called on African countries to address election issues in the country.
“At the core of Zimbabwe’s problem is a legitimacy crisis flowing from the disputed election of 2018, illegal and unconstitutional accumulation of wealth through looting, corruption and abuse of state institutions. Zimbabwe has become one of the worst governed countries in the world due to the regime’s misrule and maladministration.
“Zanu PF’s anti-poor policies have driven the citizens away. South Africa, SADC and the rest of Africa will have to deal with the harsh reality that as long as they ignore the call to encourage Zimbabwean government to conduct free and fair elections, observe the rule of law, respect human rights and other key constitutional mandates, the immigration problems will continue to affect the neighbouring countries and beyond.
“Instead of championing a better society anchored on democratic values, the regime in Harare is focusing on authoritarian consolidation. As the MDC Alliance, we stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters domiciled in South Africa. We are appealing to SADC to assist the struggle by playing their part to hold the regime to account when they abuse the citizens and practice bad governance contrary to the principles enshrined in the SADC Treaty.” he said.