Growing reports making the rounds have it that at least 300 Malawian citizens living in South Africa have been deported.
The deportees are said to have been living in the country without proper documents.
BuzzSouthAfrica gathered that over 150 deportees arrived at the Kamuzu International Airport (KIA) in the capital Lilongwe, Malawi on Tuesday.
This development was confirmed by Malawi’s deputy national spokesperson for the immigration department, Wellington Chiponde.
“We have currently received 150 Malawians that were deported from South Africa and we are expecting another 150 to jet on Wednesday,” he said
Local media, Nyasa Times reported that the other half was expected to have arrived on Wednesday.
Commenting further, Chiponde urged Malawians not to neglect or undermine other countries’ immigration regulations, adding that the rate at which Malawians flock to other countries without proper documents as appalling.
As Department of Immigration, we are urging Malawians to observe immigration regulations in all countries. Holding a valid passport is not enough but citizens should familiarise themselves with immigration requirements in all countries they are travelling to.
Last year, precisely in April, over 120 Malawians were reportedly deported from South Africa after they were held at the Lindela Immigration Removal Centre in Krugersdorp.
The Malawians were said to have been living in the country illegally. The Southern Africans were sent home at the time just two weeks after South African and Malawian top officials sat over the detention of the refugees in Lindela.
In 2013, over 1000 Malawians living in Tanzania were deported in a crackdown by the Tanzanian authorities on undocumented immigrants from neighbouring countries, including Rwanda, Burundi.
At the time, the two countries were working to reach an agreement on their long-running dispute over border demarcation in Lake Malawi.
In December 2015, 34 Malawians who left the country through Dedza border for South Africa were arrested in Tete town and subsequently deported in by the Mozambican immigration authorities.
They were driven in a South African open van with the registration number NT 60780. The driver of the van was named as Rashid Swarea.
Earlier this month, the World Bank Board of Executive Directors approved an $80 million credit to the Malawi Government for general budget support. Significantly, the budget is the first support financing approved by the World Bank for Malawi in four years.
Malawi has had a fair share of the current crisis rocking many African countries. In 2015, the Southern African state admitted that the country is in crisis.