Immigration Department lifts amnesty on foreigners in Kenya

Immigration Headquarters in Kenya. [Photo: Nation]

The Immigration Department has lifted a six-month amnesty granted to foreigners in Kenya who were unable to travel due to restrictions occasioned by COVID-19 pandemic.

In a statement on Monday, the Immigration Department directed all foreigners who were subject to the amnesty to comply with the set condition in 14 days or leave the country within the same period.

“In light of the eased Covid-19 related restrictions and resumption of international travel, the Directorate of Immigration Services has lifted an earlier amnesty on stay in the country beyond the stipulated 6 months,” part of the statement read.

It added that: “Visitors are hereby given 2 weeks with effect from September 14, 2020, to either: make arrangement to depart within 14 days or apply for residency (permit or pass) to regularise their stay,” the press releases reads in part.

The statement signed by Immigration Director-General Alexander Muteshi stipulated that failure to comply with the directive in two weeks, the government will invoke Section 53 (1) j of the Kenya Citizenship and Immigration Act (2011).

One could be charged with entering illegally in Kenya.

Those who wish to remain in Kenya have since been asked to visit the department’s website for application of work/residency permits.

Work/residency fall under seven classifications – from Class A to Class M. Each category has the following:

Class A– Issued to persons who intend to engage in mining.

 Class B– Issued to persons who wish to invest in Agriculture and Animal Husbandry.

 Class D– Issued to a person who is offered specific employment by a specific employer who is qualified to undertake that employment.

 Class G– Work permit issued to investors in a specific trade, business or consultancy.

 Class I– Work/Residence permit issued to a member of missionary society approved by the Government of Kenya and whose presence is beneficial to the country.

 Class K– Residence permit issued to persons who have an assured income derived from sources outside and undertakes not to accept paid employment of any kind.

 Class M– Work permit issued to Conventional Refugees.