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South African Court Blocks Govt Bid To Deport 178,000 Zimbabweans

IN a final blow, the former Home Affairs Minister Dr. Aaron Motsoaledi, has lost his final appeal to deport 178,000 Zimbabwean exemption permit (ZEP) holders.

The Constitutional Court has held that Motsoaledi failed to adequately consult the permit holders and granted an interim interdict which halts the government from detaining or deporting any holder of the permit. Motsoaledi’s defeat comes after the Gauteng High Court in Pretoria declared in June 2023 that his decision to terminate the ZEP was unlawful, unconstitutional, and invalid.


The ZEP is a special permit that was introduced by the South African government to address the issue of undocumented Zimbabweans. This permit allows its holders and their children to temporarily live, work, and study in South Africa, providing them with legal status.

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