Zim Embassy warns of permit scam

Zimbabwean nationals in South Africa have been advised not to fall for a scam purporting to facilitate permits for a prolonged stay in that country.

South Africa introduced a four-year permit known as the Zimbabwe Exemption Permit (ZEP) for Zimbabweans wishing to study or work in that country in January 2018.

This followed the expiry of the Zimbabwe Special Permit (ZSP) in December 2017.

A warning issued by the Zimbabwean Embassy in South Africa urged Zimbabweans not to register for the said – Zimbabwean Exemption Permit, as nothing of the sort was taking place in the country.

The scammers put out a notice calling upon Zimbabweans to apply and register for this negotiated Zimbabwean Exemption Permit, as long as they had a valid passport, evidence of employment, evidence of an admission letter for students and those using asylum-seeker permits or others who had special arrangements.

The permit holders would be expected to pay a registration fee of R1 500 during the registration period from October 23 to December 30, 2019.

“Registration forms can be obtained from the office. If for any reason you cannot come to the office (address enclosed on top of the form) you can request the form by email. If you do not have email, use WhatsApp. The office will send you the form which you must download and send back.

“Thereafter applicants will be allocated appointments to submit fingerprints and supporting documents. Please make sure that when you return the filed registration it must be together with the proof of payment,” read the fake notice.

According to the notice, processing of this permit was to be handled by the Home Affairs Stakeholders Committee where the “PVCI is the lead organisation in this Committee. All communications and queries must be directed to the Committee through the PVCI by means of the communications platforms provided. You are free to visit the office physically.

But the Zimbabwean embassy confirmed the notice was fake, as no such arrangement was being done by the South African Department of Home Affairs.

 “The SA Department of Home Affairs has distanced itself from this arrangement and referred to it as FAKE,” said the embassy on its twitter platform.

The same warning was also issued by the Zimbabwe Consulate in Johannesburg.

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