Migration News - October 2000


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OCTOBER - Click on the country title above the headlines for the entire article. Regional articles are at the bottom of this page.

COMESA free trade area faces major problems, say analysts
Three Countries launch cross-border ecotourism venture

Conflict along border with Namibia
Angola soldiers flee to Zambia
Interview with UN Special Advisor on Angolan conflict

Foreign medical personnel with bogus qualifications
Chinese workers probed
Police officer fired for being a Zimbabwean
Government to spend P43 million on holding facility for migrants
Namibian fishmongers warned for trading in Botswana

Border traffic problems with Congo

Anti-Chinese sentiment wanes
SA diplomat murdered in Maseru
Relatives of murdered official refused entry to Lesotho

Lucrative currency trading at Malawi border posts

Police seize 200 stolen South African vehicles in Maputo

West African stowaways thrown overboard
Angolan refugee population reaches 15,000 at the renewed border conflict
Citizens face deportation after assisting Angolan rebels
Namibian security forces accused of torture of Angolans
Namibian with links to Angolan rebels arrested
Human rights groups condemn arrest and torture of citizens as illegal immigrants
Angolan nationals flee to Kahenge, Namibia
Immigration tribunal orders 150 undocumented migrants out of Namibia
Gun battle follows attempted abduction of Namibian border fishermen
Conflict continues along border with Angola
Opposition calls for resignation of Home Affairs minister for 'gay-bashing'
Five new border posts established with Angola
Violence at Osire refugee camp
Home Affairs minister denounces gays and lesbians
Home Affairs minister charged with contempt of court

South Africa:
Ambrosini to sue parliament for defamation
Parliamentary Committee calls for probe of Ambrosini
Economic analysis of South African brain drain impact
South Africa facing skills shortage claims Merrill Lynch economist
Another radion personality deported from South Africa
New group defends Mozambicans in South Africa
Fourth SABC employee deported
Buthelezi attacks editorial on immigration policy process
Proposed Immigration Bill will undermine economy, says Wits economists
Ambrosini briefs Portfolio Committee on Bill
Democratic Alliance defends Buthelezi's actions towards Portfolio Committee
Home Affairs pounces on another radio personality
Ambrosini defends Department of Home Affairs approach
Company tries to reverse brain drain of skilled workers
Minister accused of thwarting parliament
Nigerian drug dealers held
Portfolio Committee criticizes Minister of Home Affairs
Home Affairs loses another court case
Analysis of Chinese immigration to South Africa
Ambrosini defends Immigration Bill
Investigation of work permit fraud in public service
Portfolio Committee criticizes Ministerial 'interference'
Lubombo SDI booms
Buthelezi proposes harsher measures against undocumented migrants
Ambrosini claims new Bill will end marriages of conveniences
South Africa and Nigeria discuss measures to reverse the brain drain
High Court rejects father's attempt to take daughter to Australia
Illegal liquor trade booms in city streets

Swazi police arrest Mozambican shoppers

600 Burundian refugees flee to Tanzania

Supreme Court considers Kaunda's citizenship
Angolan soldiers who fled to Zambia are repatriated
Angolan soldiers flee to Zambia
Zambia denies assisting Angolan rebels
More Angolan refugees overload refugee camps
UNITA rebels accomodated in camp at Ukwimi
Abducted Zambians rescued in cross-border raid
Investors accused of exploiting Zambian workers
Police blame refugees for crime wave
Minister of Home Affairs calls for clamp down on 'illegal immigrants'
President courts Chinese investors
Government sends more security
Government sends more security personnel to police Angolan border
Greek deported for making pornographic videos
Conflict in Mwange refugee camp
Zambia hosts over 230,000 refugees from Angola, DRC, Rwanda, Burundi and Somalia
Analysis of Zambia's refugee situation
Zambia to create new camp for ex-combatant refugees
Tension escalates along border with Angola

Exodus of Zimbabwean doctors called "brain haemorrhage"
Red tape delays implementation of Trans-Limpopo SDI


COMESA free trade area faces major problems, say analysts (Sapa-AFP, 30/10, Lusaka) - More than 10 African states are to launch the continent’s first Free Trade Area (FTA) on Tuesday but analysts say the long-awaited venture is doomed to failure by the wars plaguing the region.The countries, all members of the regional Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (CQMESA), will sign up to the free movement of goods and services within their states, scrapping import tariffs. Until Monday, only nine of CQMESA’s 20 member states had said they would sign -Djibouti, Egypt, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, auritius, Sudan, Zambia and Zimbabwe- with another five saying they might join next year.The chairman of COMESA, Mauritian Prime Minister Anerood Jugnauth announced Monday that "more than ten" member states had decided to sign, adding that the number could increase by the time the FTA is launched in Lusaka. Analysts however have said the wars raging through much of the region -and exacting a heavy toll on the economies of the countries involved -bode ill for the future of the FTA. "It will be very difficult for some countries to actively integrate economically due to the continued civil wars," John Chisanga, a Zambian economist said. At least five of COMESA’s 20 member countries are now - or have been until very recently - embroiled in conflict, either with their neighbours or within their own states. Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Sudan are torn by civil wars that have badly affected their economic performance for several years, while Ethiopia and Eritrea only signed an agreement ending two years of war in June. "Just as much as we appreciate the FTA it will be very difficult for some countries like Angola and DRC to participate on equal terms because of the conflicts affecting those countries," said Lee Habasonda, coordinator for the non-governmental Southern Africa Centre for Constructive Resolution of Disputes. "So long as these conflicts in Africa continue it will be very difficult to have any meaningful economic development," he added.

The HIV/AIDS crisis across Africa that is wiping out large sections of the workforce is also making it difficult for the economies of many countries to progress, Chisanga said. Jugnauth admitted Monday that the continent had a host of social and economic problems, but said countries should be working together to overcome them. "In spite of our uneven level of economic and social development, we should work together in a spirit of brotherhood, with a view to eliminating civil strike and wars, famine epidemics, HIV/AIDS and other man-made barriers to progress," Jugnauth said Monday. He claimed that COMESA member states were bearing signs of economic recovery, and that the trading bloc had since it was set up in 1994 encouraged economic stability. "This year the mean growth rate is forecast to be around four percent and none of the member states would record negative growth," Jugnauth said. In 1994, a number of member states recorded a negative Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate of 0.5 percent. Some of the 11 countries who until Monday had said they would not sign the FTA protocol fear they would lose revenue if they joined. Analysts have said meanwhile that the FTA is likely to fail in the absence of economically viable states like South Africa, which has opted to remain in the Southern African Development Community (SADC). Tanzania was initially a COMESA member but pulled out this year saying it was not ready for the FTA, but its action is being blamed on South Africa. Angola is reportedly contemplating pulling out of the trade group, which started in 1981 as the Preferential Trade Area (PTA) grouping. COMESA groups 20 countries out of the continent’s 52 states.

Three Countries launch cross-border ecotourism venture (Sapa-AFP, 30/10, Maputo) - Mozambique, South Africa and Swaziland plan to launch a joint eco-tourism venture to promote cross-border tourism and investment, a Mozambican government official said Monday. Dubbed the Lubombo Spatial Development Initiative (SDI), the scheme covers vast areas of southern Mozambique, northern KwaZulu Natal (in South Africa) and eastern Swaziland, said project spokesman Albino Mahumane. The initiative of the three neighbours is expected to be launched on November 30 this year. Andrew Zoloumis, project manager of the South African side, said his country would offer more than 15 prime tourism development sites to the private sector, among other opportunities. Tourism, agriculture and environment ministers from the three countries met in Maputo on Monday to discuss the initiative. The total cost of the project is expected to run into hundreds of millions of dollars.


This page was last updated on 3 January 2001.