Zimbabwean authorities are unhappy with South Africa’s Minister of Home Affairs Aaron Motsoaledi’s decision to repatriate a large group of detainees from the Lindela centre last week.
Motsoaledi ordered the repatriations in response to an escape at the facility earlier this month and some of those who were released were Zimbabweans who committed various crimes and have since been deported.
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Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Nick Mangwana on Saturday said 18 buses carrying some ex-convicts were expected at the Beitbridge border post. He said:
Zimbabwe is expecting 18 buses through Beitbridge between tonight and tomorrow morning. These buses have 476 Zimbabweans deported from South Africa.
A good number of expected citizens are ex-prisoners. They are coming from different detention centres, some for documentation issues.
These are mainly former prisoners; some have different histories from murder, robbery, fraud, housebreaking and documentation problems.
There are concerns that crime in Zimbabwe will spike if South Africa continues wholesale deportations.
Some of the deportees were given a five-year ban on travel to South Africa.