Harare-The Zimbabwean government is currently struggling to accumulate US$300 000 to fly back thousands of desperate Zimbabweans who are stranded in foreign lands due to the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic.
Appearing before the Foreign Affairs Parliamentary Committee chaired by Kindness Paradza in Parliament on Tuesday, Foreign Affairs Ministry secretary, James Manzou said Treasury is failing to meet the required amount of money to fly back stranded citizens, PindulaNews reports.
“We have requested for US$300 000 for air tickets from Treasury but nothing has come from the Finance Ministry leaving us to rely on well-wishers. Only a contingency fee for the embassy staff of US$10 000 has been made available. We have no money,” he said.
“Our missions need a consular fund because in most cases, we burden our embassy officials as they are forced by difficult situations to make contributions from their own pockets for Zimbabweans to come back home,” he added.
Manzou also said the Zimbabwe’s diplomats working in foreign nations are stressed by the large number of locals who are requesting to be repatriated by the government.
Desperate thousands of Zimbabweans from South Africa and Botswana have been returned home as they were no longer able to sustain their stay abroad due to the effects induced by the coronavirus worldwide.