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Zimbabweans in South Africa Get Little Help From Harare in Paper Chase

Observers suspect that some officials in Harare are not eager to provide the documents that would allow Zimbabweans to obtain South African residency permits and travel home freely when elections are held

Thousands of Zimbabweans in South Africa who are waiting to complete applications for four-year residency permits face a bleak future following a decision by the Zimbabwean Consulate in the country to stop issuing passports and other documents locally.

VOA Studio 7 correspondent Benedict Nhlapho reported from Johannesburg on the frustration of Zimbabweans who must have passports to legalize their status.

Political analyst and forced migration expert Mlamuli Nkomo told reporter Sithandekile Mhlanga that authorities in Harare are deliberately creating a bottleneck in the application process because they are embarrassed by the overwhelming number of citizens who have left the country for South Africa for economic and political reasons.