The Ministry of Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage says it will soon start the process of re-coding national identity cards of the Zimbabwe coloured community. This comes after the Sunningdale 1 Residents Association petitioned Parliament to exercise its constitutional mandate to safeguard the rights of minority Zimbabweans, particularly the coloured community, review and align laws, policies and regulations on identity classification to the Constitution and inquire from government whether it has any affirmative action policies meant to uplift minorities such as the coloured community, which have been subjected to alienation and marginalisation.
In October 2019, the Sunningdale 1 Residents Association approached SAPST for technical advice on how best to effectively engage Parliament. Through SAPST technical advice, the Association petitioned Parliament in November 2019 and the Speaker, Hon Advocate Jacob Francis Mudenda referred the matter to the Defence, Home Affairs and Security Affairs Committee .
The petitioners were concerned about the mixed race‘s continued alienation and marginalisation as a consequence of the Double Zero (00) identity classification which is found on their national identity cards (IDs), a colonially inherited system of classification used by the colonial state to classify the country’s nationals in terms of geographical places of origin.
Furthermore, the petitioners were worried that they were not in position of owning land in Zimbabwe and were excluded from employment in the Civil Service due to identity classification.
In response to this petition, the Committee summoned the Ministry of Home Affairs and Registrar General in March 2020, to which the Ministry committed to re-code the identity cards of all affected individuals and handle the technical issues related to the matter.
The Committee also advised petitioners on the follow up they made to check the Ministry‘s progress on the matter. The Committee said they will make a decision on whether to conduct public hearings to gather public views on the matter after receiving a response from the Ministry.
A petition is a formal written request made to an authority or organized body such as a Parliament or the court. The petition process is one of the effective ways to engage Parliament so that they execute their constitutional mandate.