The Zimbabwean Embassy in London has been working in cahoots with Immigration officials in the UK to facilitate the deportation of failed asylum seekers and undocumented immigrants back to Zimbabwe. Whereas previously it had been difficult for the British government to deport Zimbabweans back to Zimbabwe because of lack of travel documents and the Mugabe administration’s reticence to co-operate with the British authorities it has now been discovered that Zimbabwe embassy officials are visiting detention centres to ascertain the detainees place of birth and other such details. This is in order for them to issue travel documents to enable the easy and quick deportation of these detainees back to Zimbabwe.
Yesterday immigration lawyer Rumbidzai Bvunzawabaya issued a plea to Zimbabweans without documentation to be more vigilant as the Home Office is now routinely detaining people who go to report and send them back to Zimbabwe with the collaboration of Zimbabwe embassy officials.
She detailed a sad story of one of her clients who had been in the country for 18 years who was arrested on a Friday and by Sunday morning she was in Zimbabwe with only the clothes she was wearing. She also gave an account of one of her clients who is detained at a detention centre at Gatwick stating that he had been visited by Zimbabwean embassy officials who interrogated him for some time trying to get information about his origins. He stated that the Embassy officials speak in vernacular languages to entrap people and are usually rude.
Many Zimbabweans in the UK came into the country claiming to be running away from persecution by the Mugabe regime and since his removal by the army in November 2017 there has been a warming of relations between his successor Emmerson Mnangagwa. Many of them also claim to be supporters of the MDC Party.
This has put the said Zimbabweans in an invidious and difficult position as the very basis of their claim seems to have fallen away. Immigration lawyers are sending out warnings to their clients that this can happen to anyone and are asking people without proper documentation to contact them
Originally published by The Gweru Times
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