By- A xenophobic movement and self-appointed illegal immigrant watchdog in South Africa, Operation Dudula said it wanted to challenge the extension of the Zimbabwe Exemption Permits by the government in court.
Zandile Dabula, national secretary-general of the movement, said it rejects the “vague” reasons behind the special advisory committee’s decision. TimesLive’s Kgaugelo Maswneng cites Dabula as saying:
Operation Dudula has instructed its attorneys to apply for ‘direct access’ to the Constitutional Court on an urgent basis, with an intent to prevent the minister of home affairs [from extending the] ZEP.
If Zimbabwean permit holders were serious about legalising their stay in SA, [they] would have taken advantage of the opportunity presented by the department of home affairs.
Failure to make representations could mean the current permit holders don’t have valid legal grounds to advance or consciously elect to ignore legalising their stay in SA.
The minister of home affairs Dr Aaron Motsoaledi’s behaviour is consistent with that of Dr Joe Phaahla, who instead of instructing hospitals to report illegality taking place at public hospitals elects to tell South Africans he is contemplating making lawbreakers pay for medical service
Dabula added that Operation Dudula said contravention of the Immigration Act is a criminal offence and should not be reasoned otherwise.
Home affairs recently extended ZEPs for another six months, from December 31 to June 30 2023. One reason for the extension was that the department had received few applications by Zimbabwean nationals for ordinary visas so far.
ActionSA echoed Operation Dudula’s remarks saying South Africa has been under the grip of crime, economic squeeze and unending social ills, “allegedly due to the influx of migrants and mostly by undocumented and illegal immigrants.” Added the party:
The extension of the Zimbabwean special permit to June 2023 is, therefore, a mockery of our constitutional democracy and further chips away at the autonomy of our state and its function, especially on managing our borders.