Speaker, the ANC welcomes the announcement made by Home Affairs about issuing Zimbabweans with relevant South African permits for business, study and work. The process will commence on 20 September and the permits will be issued through all Home Affairs offices in all nine provinces.
Furthermore, the permits that will be issued to all qualifying Zimbabwean nationals will be available free of charge. This comes after the department announced that all Zimbabwean immigrants have to apply for relevant documents and register their status in the country as the special dispensation-allowing Zimbabweans crossing into South Africa the right to live, work, attend education facilities and access basic health care for a period of six months-was coming to an end. The special dispensation will come to an end on 21 December. About 213 officials will be deployed at headquarters and in provinces, where dedicated queues have been established to facilitate the process.
A track-and-trace system will also be put in place to ensure that applicants are informed of the status of their applications via SMSs. The department also plans to introduce a call centre.
We urge all Zimbabwean nationals to take full advantage of the opportunity to regulate their stay and to comply with South Africa's immigration laws. Thank you.