Source: The Chronicle (Bulawayo)
Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Reporter
NEARLY 50 percent of pupils at a school in Matobo District in Matabeleland South province have no birth certificates, a problem affecting most children in Matabeleland region.
Parliament has since challenged Government departments to eliminate stateless citizens by ensuring access to national documents. MPs said financial challenges, migration, natural disasters and the 1980s Gukurahundi disturbances are among the reasons why some people do not have national documents. The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Defence, Home Affairs and Security Services said it was disheartening that in one of its field visits, it discovered that 300 pupils out of 700 at a school in Matabeleland South had no birth certificates.
The committee’s chairperson Retired Brigadier-General Levi Mayihlome on Thursday moved a motion for the country to implement adopted international conventions to end statelessness in the country. The committee worked closely with the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission to conduct an inquiry on the issue of statelessness in the country. Rtd Brig-Gen Mayihlome said some of the stateless citizens are former immigrants who came into the country from neighbouring Malawi, Zambia and Mozambique in the 1950s.