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Zimbabwe Country Guidance case overturned


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In a follow up to my last post on Country Guidance cases generally and the Court of Appeal judgment in SG (Iraq) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] EWCA Civ 940, the existing Country Guidance case on Zimbawe, that of EM and Others (Returnees) Zimbabwe CG [2011] UKUT 98 (IAC), has been overturned by the Court of Appeal.

There is no judgment as such because the appeal was allowed by consent: the Secretary of State agreed that the determination was too legally flawed to stand. The grounds of appeal were particularly strong: that the tribunal had wrongly relied on completely anonymous evidence where the identity of the source was unknown even to the tribunal and therefore immune from any meaningful evaluation and that the Secretary of State had failed to disclose relevant evidence from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office suggesting that the situation in Zimbabwe was likely to deteriorate again as elections approach.

A copy of the consent order and statement of reasons can be found here.

This means that the most definitive treatment of risk on return to Zimbabwe is the previous Country Guidance case of RN (Returnees) Zimbabwe CG [2008] UKAIT 0008, which by the Court of Appeal’s analysis in SG (Iraq) might be said to be undisturbed by any lawful subsequent determination.

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The Free Movement blog was founded in 2007 by Colin Yeo, a barrister at Garden Court Chambers specialising in immigration law. The blog provides updates and commentary on immigration and asylum law by a variety of authors.


5 Responses

  1. I fear that the Home Office will now sit on all the Zimbabwean further submissions that are coming in (or any outstanding cases they still hadn’t got round to) until the new EM comes out, as they know that a load of cases have just seen their merits bumped up significantly. Alas.

    1. You can say that again and again John. Mine has been sitting with them for 3 years no reply nor any meaningful correspondents. Now maybe I should another 3 years and then deportation.

  2. When the West say things are changing in Zimbabwe do they actually believe this ,wish or know that the situation has changed?Or they say this with a hope that change is eminent, by suggesting that things are now changing is it with a hope that they will eventually improve?But then again when you apply for a visa to come into E U you are told “Things are bad in your country we cant allow you to visit because you wont go back “.Can someone tell me who is confused here.