By Anna Chibamu
ZIMBABWE on Wednesday launched its National Migration Policy amid calls to maximise efforts to manage unsafe and irregular migration.
The National Migration Policy is expected to tackle operational challenges of migration, advance understanding of migration issues, encourage social and economic development through migration and uphold the human dignity and wellbeing of migrants.
Home Affairs minister Kazembe Kazembe launched the policy in Harare saying globalization had transformed the movement of people across the world, thereby affecting communities, visas, economics, science, technology, religion, climate, environment and others.
“The responsibilities of governments have widened and their obligations to facilitate orderly migration remain a clarion call.
“Covid 19 restricted the movement of people, displacements and irregular migration and multi repatriation and economic disruption featured prominently during the era brought the need for a highly coordinated effort at national, regional and continental level,” Kazembe said.
The minister stated that human trafficking and money laundering are increasingly placing a demand on governments to widely cooperate in order to counter trans-national organized crime.
“Conflicts around the world continue to increase the refugee’s crime creating challenges to facilitate safe passages to save refugees.
“Against this background, migration issues can no longer be relegated to policy preference than constitute a call for socio-economic and political consideration,” added Kazembe.
According to Kazembe, the national migration policy seeks to bring coherence to all sectoral migration frameworks such as the National Labour Migration Policy, National Diaspora Policy, Trafficking in Persons Act, Immigration Act and others.
Immigration Department chief director Perfect Gono also said, “the policy looks at harnessing skills from foreigners coming in to Zimbabwe.”
“We are looking at harnessing skills from foreigners and ensure they are placed at the right sectors. We have been having a lot of foreigners coming into the country and investors have complained about our visas not being business friendly.
“The policy will make it easier for investors to stay long in the country to do business.
“At the same time, we are also trying to make sure that all those who leave the country get proper jobs that go in hand with their skills and salaries too,” Gono added.
Gono said the migration policy encompasses the Labour and Diaspora policies hence will help those leaving the country for different reasons.
“We encourage all Zimbabweans leaving the country to register under the policies mentioned before they leave. This is for their protection in the foreign land. The Labour migration policy will be everywhere they go once they register with the respective ministries where these policies are housed.”
Meanwhile, Public Service permanent secretary Simon Masanga during closing remarks told guests that “Migration should be a choice, never a necessity nor an act of desperation.”
The lnternational Organisation for Migration facilitated the creation of the policy in collaboration with the Home Affairs ministry.