by SAVIOUS KWINIKA
PRETORIA, (CAJ News) – THE decision by the South African High Court to strike from the roll urgent applications by Zimbabwe Exemption Permit (ZEP) holders protesting the termination of the documents is a further blow to Zimbabweans in the neighbouring country.
The High Court: Gauteng Local Division, in the capital Pretoria has struck the matter off the roll for lack of urgency.
It thereby is an endorsement of the recent decision taken by the Minister of Home Affairs Department, Aaron Motsoaledi, supported by Cabinet, not to renew the ZEPs, to the desperation of thousands of Zimbabweans.
Motsoaledi welcomed the High Court decision which was against the African Amity and another group led by individuals Bongani Nyathi, Gaston Ngulube and Njabulo Ncube.
The minister and the department intend to insist on punitive costs against African Amity, which instituted the legal challenge.
The court ordered Nyathi, Ngulube and Ncube to pay.
“We are determined to defend any spurious court actions aimed at undermining the lawful and reasonable decision which I took in my capacity as the Minister of the Department (Home Affairs),” Motsoaledi said.
He added, “We are doing this while we acknowledge the rights of individuals and groups to approach the Courts to seek remedies if they feel aggrieved.”
Motsoaledi forecast many other groupings were poised to take on review the decision on ZEP in the courts of law in the New Year.
“And as a result, the Department will defend the lawful, rational and reasonable decision taken in my capacity as the Minister of the Department,” he insisted.
South Africa first issued the permits in 2009 under the Dispensation for Zimbabwe Permit (DZP).
More than 240 000 individuals secured permits.
The permits were extended by three years under the Zimbabwe Special Permits (ZSP) upon expiry, to the benefit of about 198 000.
About 180 000 ZEP permits are expiring on 31st December 2021.
– CAJ News