Citizenship of Zimbabwe Advisory Note No. 4 – Restoration and Continuation of lost or renounced citizenship of Zimbabwe

HH 422-19

Good news to all senior citizens of Zimbabwe born in Zimbabwe before or after 1st January 1950

Citizens of Zimbabwe born before or after 1st January 1950 who had either lost or were being denied their citizenship of Zimbabwe have reason to celebrate!

The High Court of Zimbabwe sitting at Harare (the Honourable Mr Justice Nicholas Mathonsi, presiding) today upheld an application filed by a [citizen] born in the then Southern Rhodesia to British parents;

The Applicant argued that  at the time of her birth all persons born in the territory of present day Zimbabwe were deemed to be citizens by birth by operation of law i.e. the British Nationality and Southern Rhodesian Citizenship Act No.1 of 1949 which came into effect on 1st January 1950.

She further argued that because she was previously  a citizen, she was entitled to continue as such on a proper reading and application of the new Constitution of Zimbabwe, 2013.

The Court declared her a citizen of Zimbabwe by birth with all entitlements of a citizen of Zimbabwe and ordered the Registrar General of Zimbabwe to issue her with a citizen identity card and passport;

She is now a dual citizen of both Zimbabwe and the United Kingdom;

The decision is significant in further reaffirming the legal position  that former citizens of Zimbabwe who previously lost their citizenship by operation of  pre – 2013 citizenship laws are entitled to the restoration and continuation of their citizenship of Zimbabwe and in any event in terms of the new Constitution of Zimbabwe, 2013;

The presiding judge’s remarks are reproduced below with the permission of the successful citizen of Zimbabwe:

Dated at Harare on this 12th June 2019.

Inserted as a public service to the citizens of Zimbabwe at home and abroad.


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