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Government to decide who should get a passport

by Mandla Ndlovu
11 Oct 2019 at 12:18hrs | Views
The Committee which is being set by the Registrar General's office to vet people who deserve passports has been described as illegal and a violation of the constitution by analysts.
Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage official Mr Melusi Matshiya recently told State Media that the committee will be responsible for determining the applicants who should get passports, starting from those wanting to travel on an emergency basis

Constitutional lawyer Shephard Dube said, "The proposed committee is a sharp violation of the Supreme law of the land and the government must be warned that if it proposed by way of seeking to vet who gets a passport or not they will be in sharp violation of section 66 of the constitution.

"Someone is sleeping on their job at the Attorney General's office. It is the duty of that office to make sure government does not implement illegal decision that will open up litigation cases. We hope they will overturn their decision and respect the freedom of movement which is contained in the bill of rights."

Section 66 of the Zimbabwean Constitution says: Every citizen has the right to enter Zimbabwe, the right not to be expelled from the country, and the right to a passport or other travel document.

Citizens and people in the country legally have the right to move freely within the country, reside in any part of the country or leave the country.

Matshiya had told the media that the setting up of the committee followed unconfirmed reports that some applicants were being charged up to US$200 by some unscrupulous officials to have passports quickly processed.

"I have instructed the RG to set up a committee to vet applications," Matshiya was quoted saying. "We want to eliminate corruption because where there is a scarcity, corruption can creep in. But when we have a committee, we can help each other and make an informed decision."

Source - Byo24News