Zimbabwe international defender Teenage Hadebe is returning to his Turkish club Yeni Malatyaspor on Thursday after finally securing a new passport on Wednesday
The 24-year-old did not return to Turkey at the end of the international break last week after his passport ran out of pages.
Broke Zimbabwe is unable to import ink and the special paper used to print passports, which has a build-up of 300,000 passport applications.
Had the government not stepped in to prioritise his application, it would have taken up to two years for Hadebe to get a new one
Zimbabwe Football Association spokesman Xolisani Gwesela said: “ZIFA would like to categorically state that the Ministry of Youth, Sports, Art and Recreation and the Registrar General’s department have done their role in ensuring that Teenage Hadebe’s passport renewal is expedited in the least possible time.
“We sincerely regret the inconveniences caused to Yeni Malatyaspor by Hadebe’s delayed return. ZIFA is deeply grateful to the government for treating Hadebe’s case as a priority.
“On our part, we are also engaging Yeni Malatyaspor to ensure that we have lasting relations beyond the just concluded fixture.”
Hadebe was almost prevented from entering Zambia for an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier on November 19, but was given a special dispensation.
The former Chicken Inn defender returned home to begin the process of obtaining a new passport.
Yeni Malatyaspor were reportedly angry over the situation, before ZIFA made contact to explain Zimbabwe’s unique economic circumstances.