The Department of Immigration has apprehended 46 foreign nationals for committing various immigration offences countrywide.
The suspects were apprehended between 12th and 17th February 2021. They include 15 Ethiopians, 10 Tanzanians, nine Zimbabweans, six Congolese, three Burundians, one American, one Malawian and one Mozambican.
In a statement issued to ZANIS in Lusaka today, Department of Immigration Public Relations Officer, Namati Nshinka explained that officers in Luangwa also apprehended 33 male Ethiopian nationals for illegal entry.
Mr. Nshinka said the group of Ethiopians aged between 16 and 29 was nabbed on 16th February 2021, in Chitope village, 45 kilometres from Feira (Luangwa) boma.
He noted that the group was nabbed during an operation conducted by Immigration officers and officers from other security wings following a tip-off from alert members of the community.
He added that the Ethiopians failed to produce documentation legalizing their entry into Zambia and have since been transferred to Lusaka pending court appearance.
In another development, Mr. Nshinka disclosed that the Lusaka Regional Immigration Office has secured the conviction of two Congolese nationals, Banza Ngoie 53 and Fabrice Tshimba Doko 31, for being found in possession of a forged immigration stamp and aiding and abetting illegal immigrants respectively.
He stated that particulars of the offence are that Banza Ngoie, the now convict, on dates unknown but between 1st and 3rd February, 2021 in Lusaka, did forge an entry endorsement stamp for Nakonde border control which he endorsed in a Burundian passport number OP0221555 belonging to Niyounkuru Mediatrice without lawful authority.
In the case of aiding and abetting illegal immigrants in which male Fabrice Doko a Congolese national was jointly charged with female Regina Ndayashimiye 33, a Rwandese national, particulars are that the duo aided and abetted the stay of an illegal immigrant named Niyounkuru Mediatrice without lawful authority.
Mr. Nshinka added that particulars of the offence are that the duo on 1st February, 2021 did aid and abet the stay of an illegal immigrant by the name of Niyounkuru Mediatrice without lawful authority.
Both Banza Ngoie and Fabrice Doko appeared before the magistrate court in Lusaka on 16th February 2021.
Mr. Nshinka said Ngoie was sentenced to two years imprisonment with hard labour, without the option of a fine while Doko was sentenced to pay a fine of K15, 000 or in default nine months simple imprisonment, while Ndayashimiye denied the charge and her case will be subjected to trial.
In another court development, the Department of Immigration between 12th and 17th February, 2021, secured 35 convictions for various immigration offences with the convicts receiving sentences ranging from fines of K200 to K12, 000 or in default to serve 24 days to nine months simple imprisonment.
He explained that the convicts included 12 Congolese, nine Tanzanians, four Malawians, four Zimbabweans and two Burundians. Others were two Namibians, one Rwandese and one Senegalese.
He pointed out that during the same period, the department also removed 78 illegal immigrants from the country, including 18 Congolese, 15 Malawians, 11 Ethiopians, 11 Kenyans and 11 Zimbabweans. Others were five Tanzanians, four Burundians, one Chinese, one Egyptian and one Senegalese.
Mr. Nshinka has since encouraged members of the public with information of an individual, business, or employer who may be aiding and abetting illegal immigrants to contact the Department of Immigration