Articles

Articles

18. Jan. 2023 ABC news

German government seeks to ease rules for naturalization

BERLIN -- Germany`s socially liberal government is moving ahead with plans to ease the rules for obtaining citizenship in the European Union`s most populous country, a drive that is being assailed by the conservative opposition.

Chancellor OIaf Scholz said in a video message Saturday that Germany has long since become “the country of hope” for many, and it`s a good thing when people who have put down roots in the country decide to take citizenship.

“Germany needs better rules for the naturalization of all these great women and men,” Scholz said.

Germany’s socially liberal government is moving ahead with plans to ease the rules for obtaining citizenship in the European Union’s most populous country, a drive that is being assailed by the conservative opposition

The overhaul of citizenship rules is one of a series of modernizing reforms that the three-party coalition of Scholz`s center-left Social Democrats, the environmentalist Greens and the pro-business Free Democrats agreed to tackle when it took office last December. The Interior Ministry said on Friday that draft legislation is `as good as ready.`

Last year`s coalition agreement calls for people to be eligible for German citizenship after five years, or three in case of “special integration accomplishments,” rather than eight or six years at present. German-born children would automatically become citizens if one parent has been a legal resident for five years.

The government also wants to drop restrictions on holding dual citizenship. In principle, most people from countries other than European Union members and Switzerland currently have to give up their previous nationality when they gain German citizenship, though there are some exemptions.

Interior Minister Nancy Faeser argued that reducing the waiting time to be eligible for citizenship is “an incentive for integration.”

The aim is to reflect reality, she said Friday. “We are a diverse, modern country of immigration, and I think legislation must reflect that.”

Official statistics show that about 131,600 people took German citizenship last year, a quarter of them citizens of other EU countries. The number was 20% higher than the previous year, in part because an increasing number of Syrians were naturalized. Germany`s total population is around 84 million.

The main center-right opposition Union bloc rejects the plans to liberalize naturalization laws.

“Selling off German citizenship cheap doesn`t encourage integration ` it aims for exactly the opposite and will trigger additional ‘pull effects’ for illegal migration,” senior conservative lawmaker Alexander Dobrindt told Saturday`s edition of the Bild daily.

“Five years is a very, very short time” for people to be eligible for citizenship, Union chief whip Thorsten Frei told ZDF television.

Among other liberalizing plans, the government has removed from Germany’s criminal code a ban on doctors “advertising” abortion services. It has reduced the minimum age for voting in European Parliament elections from 18 to 16 and wants to do the same for national elections.

It also wants to scrap 40-year-old legislation that requires transsexual people to get a psychological assessment and a court decision before officially changing gender, and replace that with a new “self-determination law.” And it aims to decriminalize the possession of limited quantities of cannabis and allow its sale to adults for recreational purposes in a controlled market.

Some of the plans may run into difficulty in parliament`s upper house, which represents Germany`s 16 state governments and where Scholz`s coalition doesn`t control a majority. It had to water down elements of an overhaul of unemployment benefits to get that passed this week.

www.samigration.com V.4639

24. Mar. 2023 Daily Maverick

Hell Affairs, a South African was stuck in limbo for four years trying to prove her identity and citizenship

A mother of three had her ID blocked by Home Affairs leaving her in anguish, and unable to live a normal life. Expensively obtained affidavits, letters and a DNA test left officials unmoved about the lack of progress for years. Many South Africans have never considered what it would take to prove they are citizens of this land. For Thulisile Gumede, it took several trips from Gauteng to KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), collecting affidavits from former teachers, a letter from her village chief and a DNA test. It also took four years of her life. Gumede, a mother of three married to a Zimbabwean man, thought her ordeal was over when in 2022, Home Affairs confirmed it had unblocked her identity document. Earlier, in 2017, when applying for her son’s identity document (ID), she found out that her ID had been blocked. Blocked identity V.4747

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24. Mar. 2023 Groundup

Immigration activists launch detention hotline as calls for help increase

Activists have launched an immigration detention hotline to deal with an increasing number of calls from persons and family of people who have been detained. Lawyers for Human Rights has been inundated with calls for help from mostly immigrants who have been detained and cannot afford legal representation. Nearly a month ago, the organisation launched its immigration detention hotline. The head of penal reform at the organisation, Nabeelah Mia, says they deal with an average of about 10 to 15 calls per day. V.4748

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24. Mar. 2023 aljazeera

Canada to roll back asylum access in reported agreement with US

The United States and Canada have reportedly reached an agreement that will allow border officials to turn back asylum seekers heading north across their shared border without considering their petitions for sanctuary, sparking outcry from immigrant groups. US and Canadian media outlets reported the tentative agreement on Thursday, as US President Joe Biden visits the Canadian capital of Ottawa for his first official visit to the country since taking office in early 2021. V.4749

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20. Mar. 2023 News24

How much it costs to buy a bar or pub franchise like Tiger`s Milk, News Cafe, Cubaña, or Bossa

How much it costs to buy a bar or pub franchise like Tiger`s Milk, News Cafe, Cubaña, or Bossa 20 March 2023 | News24 South Africa`s bar and pub scene has changed significantly in recent years - particularly when it comes to national franchises. What was once a market dominated by a handful of traditional pubs and bars has seen the line blurred between bar, pub, and restaurant - to create a safer jack-of-all-trades model. Many South African bars now tend to look more like restaurants - doing quieter trade during daylight and ramping up with live music, DJs, and drinks specials in the evenings. They also tend to serve simple meals like burgers and pizzas throughout the day and late into the evening - a move that likely increases the appeal and potential revenue versus the days of grabbing a few evening pints at the bar. V.4742

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20. Mar. 2023 News24

DHA official presents higher visa backlog than Motsoaledi initially reported due to corruption

DHA official presents higher visa backlog than Motsoaledi initially reported due to corruption 20 March 2023 Published Mar 15, 2023 Cape Town - Some of the backlogs in visa applications were caused by corruption and suspensions at the Department of Home Affairs (DHA), MPs were told by a department official, who presented higher figures than initially reported. DHA acting deputy director-general for immigration services, Yusuf Simons, told the Home Affairs portfolio committee members that corruption in the department played a role in the backlog. V.4743

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20. Mar. 2023 BBC News

Why asylum seekers are choosing Canada in record numbers

Why asylum seekers are choosing Canada in record numbers Last year, nearly 40,000 migrants crossed into Canada at an unofficial border at the end of a remote rural road in upstate New York - a record number - to seek asylum. Many are driven by the belief that the country is more welcoming than the US. But can Canada handle the influx? 20 March 2023 | BBC News On a snowy winter day, Roxham Road is cold and quiet. The silence is interrupted by the sound of wheels approaching the end of the path, or the crunching of footsteps on snow. Around 150 migrants are dropped off here each day, determined to step foot into Canada. Many began their journey as far away as Brazil, with this road in New York state as their finish line. Roxham Road is not an official border point. There are no border agents at the end of it, only police officers who arrest those who cross. V.4744

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20. Mar. 2023 Daily Maverick

The emotional impact of emigration, through the eyes of an artist

The emotional impact of emigration, through the eyes of an artist 20 March 2023 | Daily Maverick As an emigration therapist, I have the privilege to explore the world of emigration through the eyes of my clients. Everyone’s experience is unique. Emigrants venture into a new, unknown world: they leave the familiar to start afresh amid new cultures and environments. Some recall a profound sense of being emotionally uprooted, others fully embrace the opportunities presented and continue to thrive. Yet, some experience both. V.4745

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20. Mar. 2023 Businesstech

Tax tips for wealthy South Africans emigrating to the US

Tax tips for wealthy South Africans emigrating to the US BusinessTech | 20 March 2023 There are three areas of concern that high net-worth individuals looking to emigrate to the United States must consider to ensure that their wealth is secure. America is a popular destination for South African emigrants, with data from Statista showing that over 100,000 South Africans lived in the US in 2020 trailing only the United Kingdom and Australia in the number of South African ex-pats. V.4746

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17. Mar. 2023 SA Migration

Refugees Good News !! If you have been in South Africa for 10 years as a Refugee did you know there is a path to permanent residence .

Refugees Good News !! If you have been in South Africa for 10 years as a Refugee did you know there is a path to permanent residence . Apply Now for Temporary Residence even with EXPIRED LOCKDOWN PERMITS The Constitutional Court handed down a judgement in the Ahmed matter as well as a Court Order opening the door for Asylum Seekers and Refugees to apply to change their status to temporary residence visa . Contact us now before this fantastic opportunity is lost . V.4741

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16. Mar. 2023 News24

Home affairs official based in Namibia busted for allegedly selling visas

A Department of Home Affairs official based in Windhoek has been fired after being caught allegedly fraudulently issuing visas to Pakistani and Bangladeshi citizens. Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said the department had revoked the visas after the secretary for civics and immigration services based at South Africa`s mission in Windhoek was busted for allegedly selling them to non-qualifying citizens. V.4740

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15. Mar. 2023 The citizen

One year on, the remote worker visa feels only a little less like a remote possibilityOne year on, the remote worker visa feels only a little less like a remote possibility

It’s ‘inexcusable’ that SA still doesn’t offer this when the average work-from-destination traveller could be spending ‘at least’ R50 000 here each month. Digital nomads are rushing to beautiful locations all over the world but can’t come to South Africa. Image: Bloomberg It’s been a year since President Cyril Ramaphosa said in his 2022 State of the Nation address (Sona) that a comprehensive review of the work visa system was “currently underway”. Led by a former director-general of Home Affairs, the review was “exploring the possibility of new visa categories that could enable economic growth”, including “a remote working visa”. V.4735

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15. Mar. 2023 Business Day

Home affairs commits to reducing permits backlog

The department of home affairs is giving attention to clearing the backlog of applications for permanent and temporary residence permits that date back to 2016, and which cause immense frustration to people wanting to settle in the country. But it only expects to have cleared the backlog in 15 months’ time. Acting director of immigration services Yusuf Simons told members of parliament’s home affairs committee on Tuesday that measures to address the backlogs included bringing in more adjudicators, the use of overtime and reducing the number of layers of adjudication that an application has to go through before being considered by the director-general. V.4736

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15. Mar. 2023 Groundup

After 10 years of court battles, Home Affairs will open Cape Town refugee office

The long wait for a Cape Town Refugee Reception Office will finally come to an end on Monday. A new office on Grenville Avenue in Epping is expected to open its doors officially for asylum and refugee services on 20 March. This comes after more than ten years of court battles since the Department of Home Affairs closed its Cape Town refugee office. In October last year, GroundUp reported that the new centre had finally started to take shape in Epping. According to the UCT Refugee Rights Clinic Facebook page, all new asylum and refugee matters will be heard at the Epping offices. “If anyone has any matters that still need to be dealt with before the 20th, you may still be required to attend their old office at Foreshore where the remaining Home Affairs staff will assist you,” the clinic advises. V.4737

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15. Mar. 2023 Groundup

Dismissed immigrant lecturers withdraw Labour Court case

Port Elizabeth TVET College agrees not to retrench them Three immigrant lecturers whose contracts at the Port Elizabeth TVET College were terminated in January have won their case in the Labour Court. Graphic: Lisa Nelson Three lecturers from Zimbabwe and Rwanda whose contracts were terminated in January by the Port Elizabeth TVET College have withdrawn their case today after the College agreed in the Port Elizabeth Labour Court that it will not retrench them. A fourth lecturer who was also dismissed, who is Zimbabwean, has not been appearing in court because he has another case pending with the college. The four have been lecturing in engineering for several years. The college management wrote letters on 12 January informing them that their services would be terminated on 1 February. V.4738

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15. Mar. 2023 Groundup

Cape Town’s notorious unfinished freeway finally gives way to Foreshore development

Development of Cape Town Gateway Precinct, linking the Foreshore to the Bo-Kaap, De Waterkant and the V&A Waterfront, can now begin as land along lower Buitengracht Street has been released to the City by the provincial government. Development has been held back for 40 years because of a road reserve along Buitengracht Street kept by the provincial government for the unfinished Foreshore freeway. The 11,254m2 of land released to the City of Cape Town on 20 January was announced by the City on 14 February. The land is made up of vacant plots and parking lots along Buitengracht Street, held in line with a 1970s’ plan to create a ring road linking the Foreshore freeway nicknamed “Solly’s Folly” after city engineer Solly Morris to Buitengracht Street between Walter Sisulu Avenue and Wale Street. V.4739

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14. Mar. 2023 Cape times

Some Home Affairs mobile units not functioning in three provinces

Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said three mobile units allocated to the Western Cape, Eastern Cape and Free State were not fully operational due to mechanical problems. Motsoaledi said the fleet belonged to the old fleet that was procured in the 2005/6 financial year. “Some of the units were previously involved in accidents,” he said. Motsoaledi was responding to parliamentary questions from DA MP Adrian Roos, who asked about the number of the department’s mobile units that were fully operational and also deployed on a day-to-day basis. V.4726

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14. Mar. 2023 Daily Maverick

Suspected Islamist militants kill 19 people in village raid in eastern DRC

Suspected Islamist militants killed at least 19 people and burnt a medical facility in a raid on a village in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) early on Sunday morning, said two regional officials and a resident. The attack, which occurred around 1am (23:00 GMT) in the village of Kirindera in North Kivu province, took place just a few kilometres from another attack on a village that killed at least 35 people last week. The army blamed last week’s attack on the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), a Ugandan armed group based in eastern Congo that has pledged allegiance to Islamic State. A resident of a nearby village and a member of local civil society blamed Sunday’s attack on the ADF. V.4727

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14. Mar. 2023 News24

Life in prison for murderer who threw a 23-year-old man out of seventh-floor Pretoria flat

A 37-year-old man has been found guilty of murdering 23-year-old Shaun Douglas Chabalala, who was thrown out of a seventh-floor window of a block of flats in central Pretoria in 2018. Dumkele “Ekere” Onyeghani appeared in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on Monday, where he stood in the dock expressionless as the judgment was read out. Magistrate Thembinkosi Ndwandwe started his judgment by going through the testimony of the State witnesses, followed by the version of the defence. Ndwandwe accepted the version of Chabalala’s business partner, Given Mzamane, who was the only witness to the killing. V.4729

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14. Mar. 2023 News24

Govt probes Shein amid concerns over its rapid gains in SA

As parts of business and labour in SA sound the alarm that Chinese fast-fashion retailer Shein could be exploiting tax loopholes to undercut local retailers and manufacturers, the government has confirmed an investigation is underway. Shein meanwhile says it is committed to ethical business and wage practices as well as abiding by the laws and regulations, but there are mounting concerns in some quarters about the rapid gains it is making the South African market. Founded in 2008, Shein is a Chinese online retailer that ships to more than 150 countries. It markets its clothes primarily via social media, and has gained a fast-growing market in South Africa - as was evidenced by long queues outside its local logistics partner`s premises during the past festive season. V.4730

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14. Mar. 2023 News24

Home Affairs Department said it is reviewing their options relating to the 22 Afghan nationals seeking asylum

The Home Affairs Department said it has asked for a legal opinion regarding the matter involving 22 Afghan nationals who were dumped in the country without being vetted. `We are reviewing our options and have asked for a legal opinion in this regard,` said Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi’s spokesperson, Siya Qoza. South Africans expressed concern over a security rush associated with the 22 Afghan nationals who are in the country; some even suspected that they might attack citizens. V.4731

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Articles

24. Mar. 2023 Daily Maverick

Hell Affairs, a South African was stuck in limbo for four years trying to prove her identity and citizenship

A mother of three had her ID blocked by Home Affairs leaving her in anguish, and unable to live a normal life. Expensively obtained affidavits, letters and a DNA test left officials unmoved about the lack of progress for years. Many South Africans have never considered what it would take to prove they are citizens of this land. For Thulisile Gumede, it took several trips from Gauteng to KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), collecting affidavits from former teachers, a letter from her village chief and a DNA test. It also took four years of her life. Gumede, a mother of three married to a Zimbabwean man, thought her ordeal was over when in 2022, Home Affairs confirmed it had unblocked her identity document. Earlier, in 2017, when applying for her son’s identity document (ID), she found out that her ID had been blocked. Blocked identity V.4747

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