Is the South African government extending the Zimbabwean Exemption Permits (ZEP)?

Claim: The South African government has started a process for holders of the Zimbabwean Exemption Permit (ZEP) to apply for the Negotiated Zimbabwe Exemption Permit for a fee of ZAR 1 500. This will enable the permit holders to extend their stay in South Africa.

Source: An online registration form titled Application For Permit Registration from the Home Affairs Stakeholders committee has gone viral.

The notice by PVCI under Registration number 028706 NPO called upon Zimbabweans to apply and register for this negotiated Zimbabwean Exemption Permit, as long as they had a valid passport, evidence of employment, evidence of an admission letter for students and those using asylum seeker permits or others who had special arrangements.


South Africa is home to millions of Zimbabweans who are mostly undocumented.

The southern African country then announced the opening of the new Zimbabwean Exemption Permit (ZEP) in September 8, 2017 following the expiry of the Zimbabwean Special Permit (ZSP).

The application process for the ZEP project started in September 15, 2017 and was meant to regularise the stay of Zimbabwean nationals in South Africa for work, study or legal business.
A total of 180 188 Zimbabweans applied for the ZEP permit.

In July this year, it was reported by the South African Home Affairs Department that over 3 000 Zimbabwe Exemption Permits outcomes still had not been collected by applicants.
In a circulating message, the department said all those that have applied and did not receive feedback were kindly requested to take their VFS receipts and valid passports to the VFS office to collect their outcomes.
The cut off date for all collections was the end of July and thereafter the outcomes would be sent back to Home Affairs for a certain period before being destroyed.

Verdict: False

The Zimbabwean Embassy in South Africa confirmed the notice was fake, as no such arrangement was being done by the South African Department of Home Affairs

“The SA Department of Home Affairs has distanced itself from this arrangement and referred to it as FAKE,” said the embassy on its twitter platform.

The embassy has since issued a warning to Zimbabwean nationals in South Africa not to fall for this scam purporting to facilitate permits for a prolonged stay in that country.

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