Registrar-General (RG) Tobaiwa Mudede has been taken to the High Court by a Zimbabwe-born British citizen, William Dale Pilbrough, and his family, who are seeking the intervention of the court for the declaration of their rights in terms of their local status.
BY CHARLES LAITON
Pilbrough, his wife Barbara Muriel and minor daughters Cloe and Hanna filed their unopposed court application, which is set to be heard today in which they cited the RG of citizenship and principal director of immigration as respondents.
“This is an application for a declaration of my rights, my wife’s rights and the rights of my two daughters; more particularly, our rights to the citizenship of Zimbabwe and the attendant rights thereto,” Pilbrough said in his founding affidavit.
“This application has been necessitated by the need for a final and definitive statement as to my status and my rights on account of the refusal by the first respondent to entertain my request for confirmation of my status as a citizen of Zimbabwe by birth.”
He added: “At the time of my birth, both my parents were citizens of Zimbabwe, then Rhodesia, by registration, as more fully appears from the attached notifications of registration as a citizen of Rhodesia and Nyasaland dated May 16, 1958 and January 23, 1961 respectively.”
Pilbrough further said when he became aware that he was eligible for Zimbabwean citizenship together with his two daughters and that his wife was also eligible for restoration of her Zimbabwean passport, he engaged Nyakutombwa/Mugabe Legal Counsels to act on his behalf, but the lawyers’ efforts had hit a brickwall.
“Upon engaging them further to assert my right, they advised me of inherent difficulties that they had faced at the offices of the first respondent (RG) which include, but not outright hostility towards any claimants for dual citizenship …,” he said.
Pilbrough further said he also went to Mudede’s offices several times, but “was met with hostility on each visit and my efforts were futile”.
“In the circumstances, the same legal counsel have advised that it is best that we approach this court for relief in the form of an order declaring myself and second to fourth applicants to be citizens of Zimbabwe by birth entitled to citizen identity documents, travel documents and with the right to leave and enter Zimbabwe unconditionally and in perpetuity,” Pilbrough said.
“The conduct of the first respondent has led to this application at great financial cost to me and it is my request that I be allowed to recover my costs from the first respondent at the rate at which I am actually incurring them.”