Stranded Zimbabweans Self-Fund Repatriation from South Africa

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Chihwa Tours (Photo Credit : Allnetafrica.com).

The Repatriation of hundreds of distressed Zimbabwean immigrants based in Cape Town and Port Elizabeth has started albeit at the returnee’s expense.

There has been widespread outcry by hundreds of Zimbabweans seeking assistance to go back to their home country after South Africa extended Covid-19 lock-down period by two weeks.

The Zimbabwean Consulate in Cape Town has issued a statement indicating that it, “has engaged three bus operators who have been tasked with the responsibility to transport Zimbabweans from the Western Cape and Eastern Cape Provinces to quarantine centres in Beitbridge, Zimbabwe.”

Chihwa Tours and Nitol Coaches will transport passengers from Western Cape while DNC Coaches will carry those from Port Elizabeth and surrounding areas in the Eastern Cape.

Returning residents will be subjected to Zimbabwe’s mandatory 21-day quarantine at designated centres in Beitbridge at the government’s cost.

“All bus operators will give the consulate a passenger manifest and bus details prior to each trip for clearance with both the South African and the Zimbabwean authorities.”

Travelers are required to have the correct travel documents and those without can apply for an emergency travel document at the consulate in Cape Town.

A number of undocumented Zimbabweans who have been out of work for many weeks now, have told AllnetAfrica that they do not have the R500 required to get an ETD.

“I have no bus fare and the R500 for the ETD because I have not been working even before the lock-down. There is no food at home and the landlord wants his rent, that’s why I want to back to Zimbabwe,” Mercy complained.

Thousands of Zimbabweans are in dire need of food aid while many desperately need to return to their homeland and escape the Covid-19 lock-down induced hunger.

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