Crisis as SA scraps critical skills permits for Zimbos
By Dylan Murambgi
MORE problems are mounting for Zimbabweans as South Africa government has ditched critical permits for Zimbabwean students who attained qualifications at former’s institutions.
The announcement was made by Home Affairs minister, Aaron Motsoaledi.
This is a clear departure from the previous arrangement where upon graduation, students could get permanent residency on the basis they were studying a critical skill.
But the Home Affairs department, through the immigration directive Number 2 of 2022, is withdrawing the blanket waiver dated April 21, 2016 in respect of graduates from South African tertiary institutions in critical skills.
“By virtue of the power vested in me by section 31 (2) of the Immigration Act, 2002, Act No 13 of 2002 (“The Act”), I hereby withdraw the blanket waiver which was granted on 21 April 2016, which waiver allowed foreign graduates at South African tertiary institution that studied towards degrees in the area of critical skills, to apply for a permanent residence permit without the need of first acquiring five years post qualification experience or the need to submit testimonials from employees,” the directive reads.
“The new applications for a permanent residence permit submitted must comply with the requirements provided for in regulations 24(4xa) (i0, 24 (4) (b) and 24(4) (c) of the immigration regulations made under section 7 of the act.”
“The contents of this immigration directive must be brought to the attention of all officials in the permitting environment and be published on the VFS and department websites,” it further reads.
Recently South Africa effectively ended a decade-long moratorium that allowed around 200 000 Zimbabweans to live and work in the country through issuing permits that were renewable after every four years. The development will likely choke lucrative diaspora remittances which were being earned by the Zimbabwean government and plunge thousands of families- who were being supported by employed relatives into deep poverty