Zim may need SA's help with passports
01 December 2010, 23:02
Pretoria - Zimbabwe may need to enlist the help of the South African government in issuing new Zimbabwean passports because the country is unable to process sufficient passports on its own, Zimbabwe's Home Affairs Co-Minister Theresa Makone said on Wednesday.
Makone, who held talks with South African Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma and her co-minister Kembo Mohadi, said Zimbabwe could only process 500 passports a day.
"The numbers (of passport applications) that are coming now show us that we will obviously be behind by the 31st (of December).
"We are still having discussions with the minister to see if it is possible for South Africa, even at a later stage, to come in and assist us doing the paperwork."
She said Zimbabwe's equipment for processing the documentation could not cope with the demand.
Zimbabweans, who do not have proper study, work and residency permits, have until December 31 to apply for the necessary documentation to obtain those permits.
Dlamini-Zuma again insisted that the deadline for applying permits would not be extended.
She said that while Zimbabweans may not have received their documentation by December 31, as long as their applications for passports had been received by Zimbabwe's home affairs department before that date, they would still be processed.