Watch this important update from our CEO, Andreas Krensel, on a recently issued Department of Home Affairs directive regarding Zimbabwean Exemption Permits (ZEP).

South Africa’s Director-General of Home Affairs, Livhuwani Tommy Makhode, issued a directive on Monday the 29th of November regarding updates concerning the outgoing ZEP.

The Immigration Directive No 10 of 2021 repeats the Cabinet decision regarding the withdrawal of ZEPs, along with information around the 12-month grace period.

According to the third paragraph of the directive, “All Companies, Learning Institutes and Banks are too (sic) kindly note that applicants who are in possession of a ZEP expiring on the 31st of December 2021 must be allowed to continue with their services, provided they submit proof of application for a main stream (sic) visa, in terms of the Immigration Act and Immigration Regulations. Proof of application must be a VFS receipt.”

This information does not directly state that applicants will be allowed to apply in South Africa, however, the request for a VFS receipt as application proof is a strong indication that applications can be made from within South Africa at relevant VFS branches.

The fourth paragraph of the directive states that “All applicants with a ZEP must be allowed to travel freely in and out of South Africa until 31 December 2022, when the 12-month grace period ends, after which they will only be allowed to travel in and out of South Africa, If in possession of a valid visa.”

If the ZEP holder is in possession of a VFS receipt, they will be allowed to continue work-related activities during the 12-month grace period. However, it is not clear whether ZEP holders will be able to continue with work-related activities during the grace period without a VFS receipt from the 1st January 2022.

VFS centres in South Africa will be closing on the 17th of December 2021 and most appointments have been booked already, making it unclear as to whether ZEP holders will be able to apply for a visa and obtain a VFS receipt before ZEP permits expire on the 31st December 2021.

Click here for more information regarding South African visa options.

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