A group of 56 illegal Ethiopian immigrants led by Esatu Sumoro which was intercepted last Friday in West Nicholson, Gwanda on their to South Africa fainted because of hunger while 8 of them were hospitalised.
The 56 Ethiopians were charged with contravening immigration laws and were brought to court under heavy police guard. However some of them started complaining of hunger with some of them sobbing with people only assisting them after some of them fainted. Eight of them where taken to hospital where they were admitted, fed and rehydrated. Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Service officers had to return to Gwanda prison where they prepared porridge to feed the reminder.
When the immigrants returned to court, Gwanda resident Magistrate Mr Obedience Matare refused to place them on remand and surrendered them to the immigration department which took them to their holding centre in Beitbridge. Norman Dube who was driving them was charged with assisting them to enter Zimbabwe without permits and was told to pay a fine of $500 or face 60 days in jail.