BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)-Very shameful! Immigration authorities in Zimbabwe have deported 62 Malawian nationals for violating various Immigration laws and Covid-19 lockdown guidelines.
This is according to Mwanza border public relations officer Pasqually Zulu who said the group arrived in the country through the Mwanza border on Wednesday May 19th, 2021.
Zulu said despite border closures in the wake of Covid-19 global health crisis, the group indicated that they left Malawi using uncharted routes in March this year and they had no any travel documents.
He added that some were arrested at Beightbridge while the other group at Mutoko town whilst in transit to South Africa. They were in custody for two months at Harare Central Prison up until the Malawi Embassy officials in Harare facilitated their deportation.
The group which has come in two buses fully sponsored by International Organisation for Migration (IOM), had 52 men, nine women and one minor aged 7 months and it has been established that Mangochi, Machinga and Mzimba districts dominated the population.
In a related development, Mwanza border is on Thursday May 20th, 2021 expecting the arrival of 43rd batch comprising of nine buses with 504 Malawian returnees from South Africa The publicist said according to the travel manifest forwarded by Foreign Affairs officials at Malawi Embassy in Pretoria, the group has a population of 122 women, 337 men and 45 minors.
It is further reported that out of the 9 buses coming today, one bus is fully loaded with 68 Malawian deportees from Lindera detention center who were nabbed for violating South Africa’s immigration laws.
As per government directive, all the returnees are supposed to have Covid-19 negative certificate and upon arrival at the formation, all health protocols, border security checks, documents verification and goods clearance will be done before being released to their respective destinations.
Clearance of self repatriated Malawian nationals started at Mwanza border on May 23 2020 after Malawian nationals living in South Africa sounded to government following the economic challenges they were facing due to impact of Covid-19 pandemic.
Many Malawians are living illegally in South Africa for job opportunities.