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Asylum seekers harm Zimbabwe’s image

by Wadzanai Mhombera

FOR the last 10 or so years, many Zimbabweans have sought asylum in the United Kingdom.
Reasons put forward being that their lives were in danger, politically that is. That Zanu-PF and Robert Mugabe were persecuting them. That if they return to Zimbabwe they will be maimed, tortured, raped, persecuted, killed and murdered by the Zanu-PF government.

Some have even appeared on international news agencies like CNN, BBC and Sky News claiming that Zimbabwe, their motherland where their relatives remained, was a no-go area for them.
I remember one former ZBC sports journalist who was quoted saying there was genocide in Zimbabwe. Some even went to the extent of engaging lawyers to ensure they got asylum status in the UK.

The right of asylum or political asylum, is an ancient judicial notion, under which a person persecuted for political opinions or religious beliefs in his or her own country may be protected by another sovereign authority, a foreign country or church sanctuaries.

The question I wish to put forward is: was it ever necessary for Zimbabweans to seek asylum? Was there ever genocide in Zimbabwe in the last 10 years? Was Zimbabwe ever on fire that it was uninhabitable?
If one says yes to these questions, why is that most of us remained here without seeking asylum and refugee status elsewhere? Why is that those who sought and got asylum in the UK left their parents, loved ones and relatives in Zimbabwe?

Why is it that they continued to communicate with them and some sent them money which indeed would arrive safely in a nation with ‘genocide’? Some even sent money which was used by those who remained to build houses.  Would this had been possible in a country where there was chaos and people were being maimed as the asylum seekers portray in their applications for asylum in the UK?
I wish to put it forward that asylum seekers have to some extent destroyed this country through blatant lies. These people should not have the privilege of being called Zimbabweans. They lied against this country so as to get residence in the UK and other European countries.

What baffles the mind is that most of these asylum seekers left their parents in Zimbabwe. Why would they turn their backs on their parents and leave them to be ‘maimed’ by Zanu PF? I have had the opportunity of meeting one asylum seeker and I discovered something very disturbing. When one gets asylum status in the UK, he or she is not allowed to visit or return to Zimbabwe. If he visits Zimbabwe, his status will be revoked with the UK Home Office arguing that such a visit would mean it is safe for the asylum seeker to return to Zimbabwe.
So what these brothers and sisters of us do when they visit Zimbabwe is they touch down in South Africa, say at OR Tambo International Airport where their passports will be stamped, they will then enter Zimbabwe illegally through bribing officials at ports of entry.MORE


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