Africa News

SA “ready” for Zimbabwean Special Permit

PRETORIA: SOUTH expressed readiness to accept applications for the Zimbabwean Special Permit (ZSP) project.

Home Affairs Minister, Malusi Gigaba, disclosed on Thursday the applications would be done online, effective next week, at a cost of R870.

“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,”Gigaba said in Pretoria.

He said VFS had secured all the 10 ZSP Application Centres. 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.

“Capacity has been set aside within our Permitting section to be able to process the applications. 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,” said Gigaba.

Currently there are 120 dedicated staff members who will be dealing with ZSP adjudication.

Gigaba explained the introduction of the administration fee.

Previously, the permits were at no cost.

“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.”

Approximately 245 000 holders of the Dispensation for Zimbabweans Project (DZP) are eligible to apply for the ZSP.