HOME Affairs minister Kembo Mohadi and the Zimbabwe Community in South Africa (ZCSA) are set to hold key talks on the permits issue in Pretoria today amid reports that some South African banks were now freezing accounts held by Zimbabweans.
ZCSA is an organisation assisting Zimbabweans to comply with the new South African permit system.
ZCSA head of communications Sicelo Sibanda said the bank account closures were raised during a consultative meeting held on Saturday in Hillbrow, Johannesburg.
Sibanda said among the concerns raised was the treatment from financial institutions.
“Some of the concerns raised are that some permits have already expired and this makes it difficult for people to travel to Zimbabwe on family business and some banks have already frozen accounts following the expiry of permits” said Sibanda.
“The leadership of ZCSA will tomorrow (today) meet with Mohadi. This meeting comes as a result of concerns raised by our members since our meeting in Hillbrow on Saturday,” added Sibanda.
Sibanda said following some of the complaints, ZCSA “had no choice, but to seek a meeting with Mohadi. We are pleased that Mohadi has agreed to meet us for the second time. As ZCSA, we are committed to addressing issues that affect Zimbabwe nationals in South Africa”.
ZCSA chairperson Ngqabutho Mabhena told our sister paper Southern Eye that they were not certain whether the grouping would be part of the planned meeting between Mohadi and his South African counterpart Malusi Gigaba.
The two are scheduled to meet next Thursday.
More than 250 000 Zimbabweans were issued with permits in the 2009 special dispensation programmes to legalise their stay in South Africa. The permits expire before the end of the year.
South Africa has been introducing a raft of strict measures to regulate foreigners in that country. Under the new regulations, foreigners would have to travel back to their home countries to apply for new permits once they expire.