Malawian President Lazarus Chakwera has requested that the South African government introduces special permits to his citizens that are working locally.

Chakwera is leading a delegation of ministers who are meeting with President Cyril Ramaphosa and various members of his Cabinet in Pretoria.

Chakwera has been upfront about the humanitarian agreements that he would like to see the two countries sign.

“I want to ask that you allow the special permits to be issued to Malawian migrants employed in the informal sector just as is the case for Zimbabwean and Lesotho [migrants]. In the same vein, I would like to ask that Malawians be able to apply for new permits and renew expired ones while in South Africa as a reciprocal arrangement. More broadly I request your help in simplifying visa extension procedures.”

Chakwera has also expressed concern about how long it takes to deport Malawians from the Lindela Repatriation Centre.

“I have often wondered if the period of detention of detainees at Lindela camp can be reduced because they are there 120 days and even if we say reduce it to 60 days it may be too many days as a first step towards the ultimate idea of seven days. My third request has to do with the possibility of easing the issuance of medical visas  to Malawian diplomatic passport holders, unlike the current arrangement where they are required to obtain an ordinary visa before acquiring a medical visa.”

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