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Economic Crisis Brings Zimbabwe Passport Issuance To a Halt

The office of Zimbabwe's registrar general has stopped issuing passports on a regular basis due to a shortage of hard currency to buy essential materials, though some are available for those with US$100 to spend and a qualifying emergency situation.

An official at the office, speaking on condition of anonymity, said staff have been told not to accept applications for regular passports until further notice.

Elsewhere, Zimbabwean courts have run out of bond paper to print judgements and marriage certificates. The state-run Herald paper reported that Bulawayo courts have stopped processing civil unions as they have run out of marriage certificates.

Parliamentarian Willis Madzimure, a member of the home affairs committee, told reporter Carole Gombakomba of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that crisis shows that a major overhaul of the economy is urgently needed.

Madzimure, who represents Kambuzuma, Harare, is a member of the Movement for Democratic Change faction led by MDC founding president Morgan Tsvangirai.

More reports from VOA'S Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...