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23-10-2022 – The Department of Immigration in Lusaka has apprehended fifty-one (51) persons in a clean-up operation conducted in the early hours of Saturday, 22nd October, 2022 in various parts of Lusaka. Those apprehended were twenty-two (22) Burundians, fourteen (14) Congolese, seven (7) Tanzanians and four (4) Lebanese. Others were two (2) Chinese, one (1) Rwandese and one (1) Zambian. The Zambian was nabbed for obstruction. Meanwhile, four (4) Lebanese, one (1) Chinese, and the Zambian have since been released while the remaining forty-five (45) are in detention pending prosecution.

In another development, the Department of Immigration in Kasempa secured convictions of a 31-year- old Zambian businessman, Victor Sibooli, and a 39-year-old female Zimbabwean, Lizzy Ndambakuwa, for harbouring an illegal immigrant and unlawful stay in the country, respectively. The couple was apprehended on 11th October 2022 in the Chief Capital Area of Kasempa District following a tip-off from members of the community that a Zambian was allegedly harbouring a Zimbabwean with questionable immigration status. Particulars of the offence are that Victor Sibooli, on unknown dates but between 1st January 2019 and 11th October 2022 in Kasempa District of North-Western Province, being a Zambian national, wilfully and unlawfully harboured Lizzy Ndambakuwa, a Zimbabwean national. Meanwhile, Lizzy Ndambakuwa was charged with the offence of unlawful stay in the country.

The couple appeared before the Kasempa Magistrate Court, where Victor Sibooli was sentenced to pay a fine of K 60,000 or, in default, 24 months simple imprisonment. His Zimbabwean partner, Lizzy Ndambakuwa, was sentenced to pay a fine of K 60,000 or, in default, 12 months simple imprisonment, suspended for 12 months. The conviction of the Kasempa couple brings the number of convictions secured by the Department between 17th and 20th October 2022 to seventy-five (75).

Meanwhile, Immigration Officers at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport on 19th October 2022 refused nine (9) Zambians exit from the country. The group attempted to travel to Qatar to take up jobs in the hospitality industry without clearance from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the Ministry of Labour.

The Department of Immigration, between 17th and 20th October 2022, apprehended seventy-five (75) persons for various immigration offences. During this period the Department also removed fifty-nine (59) illegal immigrants from the country, including twenty-three (23) Ethiopians removed on 20th October, 2022 via Kenneth Kaunda International Airport after serving sentences for illegal entry and unlawful stay.

The convictions of the Kasempa couple should serve as a timely warning to Zambian citizens and residents who are in the habit of aiding, abetting, and harbouring illegal immigrants. The maximum penalty for these offences is a fine of up to K 150,000 or 5-years imprisonment, or both. We also wish to advise prospective students and job seekers planning to travel abroad to verify job and scholarship adverts with relevant authorities such as the Ministry of Labour and Social Security and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation to avoid exploitation.