Articles

Articles

24. Oct. 2017

White Paper on Migration: border refugee processing facilities: implementation by Home Affairs

Meeting Summary The Department of Home Affairs briefed the Committee on implementing the White Paper on International Migration including establishing one stop border posts (OSBP) and refugee processing farcicalities closer to the border. The DHA noted that in the 2016/17 financial year, it produced the White Paper on International Migration (WPIM) which was approved by the Cabinet on 29 March 2017 and gazetted on 28 July 2017 for public comment. The WPIM provided a new policy framework that would guide the comprehensive review of immigration and related legislation. Those elements of the WPIM that required administrative action was already being implemented. However, those elements of the WIPM that required major changes would not be implemented immediately pending the finalisation of a new legislation. The Department gave a progress report per policy and strategic intervention. In terms of the management of admissions and departures, the policy objective was to strengthen a strategic, modern, integrated and risk-based approach in managing a secure and efficient movement of people, goods and conveyances. In terms of management of international migrants with skills and capital, the policy objective was to increase South Africa’s international competitiveness for critical skills and investment. In terms of the management of ties with South Africa expatriates, the policy objective was to proactively manage and harness emigration for development purposes. In terms of management of international migration within the African context, the policy objective was to ease cross-border movement for African citizens and to provide a legal permitting route for SADC economic migrants. In terms of management of asylum-seekers and refugees, the policy objective was to provide protection and basic services to asylum-seekers and refugees in a humane and secure manner. In terms of management of the integration process for international migrants, the policy objective was to establish a secure, strategic and integrated approach for the integration of international migrants into communities. In terms of management of enforcement, the policy objective was to reduce irregular migrants and improve compliance with immigration and related legislation and by-laws. The Department said that while it had made serious advances in developing a new vision for a futurefit and responsive international migration, divergent and conflicting views on the management of international migration persisted. In order to facilitate a national conversation on the new policy the DHA was undertaking dialogues with thought-leaders across various sectors and disciplines. Members welcomed the presentation and were in consensus that a lot had to be done in order to close gaps and to speak to the African Union’s Vision 2063. They felt that the problem lied in the implementation of refugee and immigration policy and highlighted persisting challenges. Questions were also asked about how the BMA Bill would be implemented and how the White Paper would be implemented if there were no adequate financial and human resources. Meeting report The Chairperson welcomed the delegation from the Department and read out the apologies. Briefing by Department of Home Affairs (DHA) Mr Jackson McKay, Acting General Director-General, DHA, explained that the purpose of the presentation was to provide the Committee with an update on the progress made by the Department towards the implementation of the new White Paper on International Migration (WPIM). Mr McKay said that, in the 2016/17 financial year, the DHA produced the WPIM which was approved by the Cabinet on 29 March 2017 and gazetted on 28 July 2017 for public notice. The DHA briefed the Committee on the key elements of the WPIM on 13 June 2017. The WPIM recommends policy and strategic interventions in the following policy areas: • Management of admissions and departures • Management of residency and naturalisation • Management of international migrants with skills and capital • Management of ties with South African expatriates • Management of international migration in the African context • Management of asylum seekers and refugees • Management of the integration process for international migrants • Management of enforcement The WPIM provides a new policy framework that will guide the comprehensive review of immigration and related legislation. Those elements of the WPIM that require only administrative action are already being implemented. However, those elements of the WPIM that require major changes will not be implemented immediately pending the finalisation of a new legislation. Mr McKay noted that the strategic objective of the medium term targets for 2017-2020 was one fold: movement of persons in and out of the country managed according to a risk based approach. Its output included (i) immigration and refugee policy developed and legislation reviewed; (ii) BMA established and operationalised and (iii) establishment of asylum processing centres closer to the country’s borders. Mr McKay briefed the Committee on progress report per policy and strategic intervention. In terms of the management of admissions and departures, the policy objective was to strengthen a strategic, modern, integrated and risk-based approach in managing a secure and efficient movement of people, goods and conveyances. In terms of management of international migrants with skills and capital, the policy objective was to increase South Africa’s international competitiveness for critical skills and investment. In terms of the management of ties with South Africa expatriates, the policy objective was to proactively manage and harness emigration for development purposes. In terms of management of international migration within the African context, the policy objective was to ease cross-border movement for African citizens and to provide a legal permitting route for SADC economic migrants. In terms of management of asylum-seekers and refugees, the policy objective was to provide protection and basic services to asylum-seekers and refugees in a humane and secure manner. In terms of management of the integration process for international migrants, the policy objective was to establish a secure, strategic and integrated approach for the integration of international migrants into communities. In terms of management of enforcement, the policy objective was to reduce irregular migrants and improve compliance with immigration and related legislation and by-laws. Policy interventions and progress status with respect to the said policy objectives were provided Mr McKay noted key on-going interventions, which included establishment of the Border Management Authority (BMA), a One-Stop Border Post (OSBP), and asylum processing centre closer to the borderline. The Department of Home Affairs was responsible for overseeing the submission of the draft OSBP Policy to Cabinet for approval. Before the draft Policy is submitted to Cabinet, a Socio-Economic Impact Assessment (SEIAS) needs to be undertaken. The following aspects of the WPIM require further development: • Criteria and preconditions for the establishment of Ports of entry; • Criteria and procedure for providing protection and identification services to vulnerable groups (elderly, children, disabled and pregnant women) • Conceptualisation of a Points-Based System for skilled international migrants; • Conceptualisation of a risk-based deportation policy and strategy; • Conceptualisation of a ‘whole of government approach’ for managing migration; • Review of citizenship and marriage policies regarding the grounds for granting citizenship to foreign nationals; • Establishment of an interdepartmental institutional mechanism for managing emigration; and • Establishment of an intergovernmental institutional mechanism for managing integration. It is envisaged that a consolidated report on the above policy interventions will be submitted to the Minister for approval by 31 March 2018. Mr McKay said that while the DHA had made serious advances in developing a new vision for a futurefit and responsive international migration framework, divergent and conflicting views on the management of international migration persisted. In order to facilitate a national conversation on the new policy the DHA was undertaking dialogues with thought-leaders across various sectors and disciplines. Discussion The Chairperson said that there was a lot still to be done. He hoped that the DHA had the human resources to implement these policy interventions. He asked the DHA to state clearly how the establishment of the BMA will happen. What would happen if the BMA Bill was signed into law? He expressed concern that the BMA would not be implemented because of its multi-faceted character and because of a lack of funding. Ms N Dambuza (ANC) welcomed the presentation which clearly outlined the policy interventions. She, however, felt that there were a quite number of issues in immigration and refugee policy that needed amendments. She was concerned that the following year the Committee would not have time to consider the proposed amendments to existing laws. She noted that there were challenges faced by the DHA in the provision of services that led to various complaints from foreigners. She felt that immigration and refugee laws needed to be amended as soon as possible in order to address these issues. There were many complaints about the conclusion of marriages in respect of asylum-seekers. She asked why the DHA was not processing the asylum-seekers permits in a correct way and why they were not given opportunity to marry. Would the Department adhere to the African Union’s Agenda 2063? What could be done to harmonise the Southern African migration laws with the said vision so as to ensure the achievement of economic development thereby avoiding the economic growth predicament. What aspects were needed to be prioritised for the implementation of the White Paper? Mr M Hoosen (DA) commented that there were a number of positive policy interventions in the White Paper; however it also contained scary interventions. Most problematic was the whole notion of how the DHA measured foreigners who come into South Africa. What criteria were taken into account? What was apparent was that permission of a foreigner into the country was measured on the question of whether he or she would be contributing to the economy. The immigration policy was economic oriented. He gave an example of Mauritius where that country set out having a minimum amount of money as a requirement for granting permanent residence status. He then asked whether DHA conducted any study in relation to the granting permanent residence status. Referring to the long term residence permit that would be introduced, he asked how the existing applications would be dealt with. He raised his concern about backlogs in the consideration and finalisation of the permanent resident permit (PRP) applications as well as in adjudicating asylum applications. Mr Hoosen asked how applications for asylum would be dealt with in the centres if the DHA could not manage the existing demand of applications. Could the DHA affirm that it was capable of providing accommodation to asylum-seekers? What would happen in the case of mass influx of refugees? The Green and White Papers were silent on how these issues would be dealt with. What kind of information was the Department taking into consideration in the management of international migration? It appeared that one of the factors was whether an individual could invest in the country. What could be that investment? Why was the Department asking foreign nationals to seek permission from the Minister if they want to marry a South African? What was the motivation of requiring the consent from the Minister for a Marriage Clearance Certification? He was happy to see the cost projection for the establishment of the processing asylum centres, and asked why there was no cost projection in terms of establishing the BMA. On the dialogue and engagements, he asked if there was any engagement with civil societies and refugees and asylum-seekers. Ms H Hlope (EFF) said that there was contradiction in the asylum law with respect to the right to work and study. How would the basic needs of asylum-seekers be catered for in the processing centres if they had no right to work and study? Would they be allowed to study and work in the processing centres? On dealing with documentation of refugees and migrants, she raised concern about the long queues she noticed at the Department offices in eThekwini and Bloemfontein. It was apparent that the DHA was challenged when it came to managing the influx of refugees and migrants and asked whether the DHA would be able to implement the new policy interventions. She noted in the White Paper, the DHA referred to something called a safe first country principle and asked how the principle would apply and how it would deal with Africans given that the borderline was colonial. Many African came in South Africa in search of green pastures. It was true that many of them were in the country to look for jobs. This was a fact that could not be disputed. The White Paper however was silent on how this problem should progressively be addressed. If one exited the parliamentary precinct, one would immediately come across foreigners running their business. Foreigners were in the country in numbers. A policy intervention was needed in order to document them and to allow them to do their business in a formal way. There was a need to attract their critical skills. She stressed that something ought to be done on the side of the DHA. Foreigners needed South Africa and South Africa needed them. She recalled that during the liberation struggle, South Africans needed them and they offered shelter to South Africans. Instead of facilitating their movement and stay, the DHA had restricted such facilitation on the basis of increasing security concerns and measures in the asylum and immigration policy. With these security concerns in place, how will the DHA be able to achieve the good things that were articulated in the White Paper? She therefore agreed with the Chairperson that a lot had to be done for policy interventions to be operational. Ms D Raphuti (ANC) welcomed the presentation on the White Paper. She noted that the permanent residence permit would be replaced by a long term residence visa and asked whether such approach would apply to holders of the PRP or those

who have applied pending the finalisation of their applications. Referring to marriages between South Africans and a non-citizen, she asked why DHA was not registering children born from this marriage. She highlighted that there was a TV programme that showcased these challenges. Ms Raphuti referred to critical skills and said she was very sceptical about doctors because many of them were bogus, who came into the country just to do gruesome atrocities. Why did the Department of Health not detect that these people who called themselves doctors were bogus? She posed the following question: how will the DHA be able to identify the rotten potatoes from good potatoes, if it said that they were high risk migrants who should not be allowed in the country? She welcomed an approach of cross-border traders visa and SMME visa for immediate neighbouring countries. She finally said that she wanted to see the BMA running. The BMA Bill was stuck at the NCOP level and asked what the problem was, hindering the Bill to progress to another level. Ms N Mnisi (ANC) welcomed the presentation and commented that a lot of work was done under the Green and White Papers to ensure gaps were closed. However gaps were still apparent. She noted that a risk-based deportation strategy would prioritise deportation of high risk over low risk migrants and asked the DHA who it considered as a low and high risk migrant and what factors would be taken into account to classify migrants in either one of these two categories. On the establishment of immigration repatriation centres as well as processing centres, she said there was a need to engage with neighbouring countries and asked what agreements with neighbouring countries were concluded. She noted that there were international conventions that impacted on the implementation of policy interventions and asked whether those that were a hindrance could be reviewed. On the question of consulting stakeholders, she asked the DHA to clarify changes that were made when the Green Paper was turned into a White Paper. Mr A Figlan (DA) said that South Africa had a good policy on international migration but the problem was its implementation. He asked how the BMA law would be operationalised. Would it be possible to implement it if each and every port of entry there was a shortage of human resources? The DHA was proposing policy interventions but the concern was: how it will be operationalised. What could be done to improve the implementation of the policy? Was there any strategy to improve on operations? The Chairperson said that the question of lack of human resources should not be considered in isolation. There were other factors that affected the operation of the DHA. The successfulness of the work of the DHA was dependent on the work done by other departments. He asked how the interdepartmental relationship was. How did the DHA collaborate with other departments to ensure its immigration policy related targets were achieved? He noted that the new international migration policy sought to separate asylum-seekers from economic migrants. However, the problem was that all these people were abusing the asylum system and asked how the policy objective of not abusing asylum system would, in practice, be achieved. On the issue of AU’s Vision 2063 and the question of free movement, Mr McKay responded that, for the past years, they negotiated the tax free and the free movement protocol. There were five meetings in this regard in which migration experts converged to discuss the issue of migration on the continent. African countries should work together to be prosperous through the establishment of a single economic system, applicable on the continent. South Africa agreed with and fully supported the Vision 2063 because it also believed that a single economy would make Africa prosper. The DHA was also arguing that allowing a free movement on the continent was a cornerstone of achieving that prosperity. However, there was a need to look at security issues that were posed by free movement of people on the continent. It should be noted that there was economic disparity among African countries. Because of the question of economic disparity, people tended to migrate to rich countries or countries with promising economic development. Such tendency would lead to people leaving their country to go to settle in another country. For that reason, there were certain pre-conditions that ought to be established in order to allow a free movement. Of concern was that some countries did not have population registers and DHA could not know where some people were coming from if allowed to enter the country freely. The other prerequisite was that everyone should have a travel document if the free movement could be allowed. The harmonisation of immigration systems with the 2063 Vision could not be achieved without identifying low and high risk migrants. Other African countries had started to implement a free movement principle but South Africa had put forward those proposals in order to implement free movement protocol. This would be discussed in the upcoming meeting. The prerequisite for implementation of the protocol in question included the consideration of the question of burden sharing on the one hand and the need to deal with guns in order to decrease the problem of transnational crimes and asylum-seeking. South Africa subscribed to the free movement protocol, provided that certain pre-conditions were met. On the question of fast-tracking complaints of foreign nationals, Mr McKay noted that these complaints could be resolved through policy interventions. These complaints were difficult to address as they were policy related. Nothing could be done unless the policy was amended. However, there were those complaints of an administrative nature. These complaints were addressed. On the view of making admission of foreigners in the country difficult, Mr McKay noted that he believed that the proposed international migration policy was a ground-breaking because it would allow people to come to South Africa. There were various visas introduced and there was a consideration of protecting South Africa against those foreign nationals who might put the South Africa at risk. Obviously, those who were financially stable or independent could apply not only visa but also PRP. Despite the showing of financial stability, there was a need to check where the money came from or the type of business they were engaged in because South Africa could not allow drug dealers to come to South Africa. There was an amount set in order to issue retirement visas and all these were done in order to boost South African economy. On the marriage between a citizen and a non-citizen, he noted that there was a concern that there were a huge number of applicants of the PRP on the basis of spouse or who qualified for the PRP on the basis of spouse or marriage. On the question of backlog in the issuance of the PRP, Mr McKay said that a huge number of applicants were applying for the PRP on basis of spouses or relatives and there was a concern about marriages of convenience. In order to deal with this problem, all marriages had to be investigated first in order to verify the validity of the marriage or to determine whether a marriage did exist merely on paper. He agreed that there was a backlog but this was because a high number of bogus applications could be found or detected. On the establishment of processing centres, he noted that this was a contentious an issue. He agreed that Mr Hoosen’s concern was valid but it was the duty of the DHA to find mechanism to mitigate the problems raised by Mr Hoosen. He reported that many asylum-seekers indicated during interviews that they were in South Africa to look for a job. If they were in South Africa to seek a job, they were economic migrants. Many asylum-seekers and economic migrants were coming from the SADC countries and therefore a SADC permit would be created. This would address the big chunk of asylum-seekers. In processing centres, asylum-seekers would not be kept for too long. Their applications would be considered within a reasonable time. Of importance was their separation from economic migrants. Because of disaggregation, asylum application would be dealt quicker. Only those who qualify to be refugees would be allowed to move freely in the country. In the case of mass influx, there were other laws that could kick in such as disaster legislation. It was not the refugee regime that dealt with mass influx of refugees. Mr McKay responded that there was a study on international migration and how migration could be benefited from to develop the economy. The study included those South Africans who were in the diaspora. People who were outside the country were bringing a lot of money to their countries. Accordingly, it was important to get people in the diaspora to invest in the country. A document would be established to illustrate how these investments could be managed. There was a need to know why people were compelled to leave South Africa or their home countries. On the question of managing refugees, Mr MCKay responded that there were refugee reception centres based in Musina, Durban and Pretoria. However, applicants for asylum could pass to these offices and go to other provinces. Applicants for asylum preferred the Durban office where they could easily apply without going through biometrics processes. There was a huge congestion in Durban. As far as he knew, there was no refugee reception office in Bloemfontein. He asked Ms Hlope to give him the details regarding the office in Bloemfontein as illegal activities might be involved. On the question of the first safe country principle, Mr McKay responded that there were discussions on the implementation of the principle; in particular, how the challenges related to its implementation could be addressed. On the introduction of security measures, Mr McKay responded that the immigration law was created to protect citizens and to ensure that citizens were first catered for before the rest. Immigration law created certain rules and principles that apply to non-citizens. According to immigration rules and principles, the state should first see whether citizens had access to social and economic services such as education and hospitals prior to extending such services to non-citizens. On the question of whether the law would work retrospectively with regard to holders or applicants of the PRP, Mr McKay responded that the new law would not work retrospectively. However, those refugees who were in the process of application for PRP were applying for a long term residence permit. They should also understand that naturalisation should not be based on the time stayed in South Africa. On the question of inter-departmental cooperation or collaboration, he noted that the DHA could not deal with all issues related to migration on its own. If a person was given a visa on the basis of critical skills to practice as a doctor in South Africa, such visa could be issued provided the Department of Health had done its work. For example, the DHA could consider that people were eligible to come to South Africa; but the DHA could hear people complaining that hospital beds were full of foreigners. He asked how this issue would be of concern to the DHA if those foreign patients were legally admitted in the country. This implied that other departments had to regulate foreign nationals in their sector and to ensure coherence in the migration management policy. A question was asked in passing like: who managed the pastors and priests? A question such as this would be difficult to respond to. There might be someone who was responsible to manage pastors and priests in South Africa. And if there was no one, this implied that there was a lacuna in the law and a policy intervention was needed. The managing of foreigners required cooperation between departments. On the question of deportation of high risk migrants, Mr McKay responded that the DHA could only engage in the deportation of (illegal) migrants if it had spoken to the foreign country concerned. On the changes effected from the Green Paper to the White Paper, Mr McKay noted that there were comments that were provided by human rights organisations. These organisations, among other things, disputed that the centre should be referred to as detention centre; and was finally referred to as processing centres for asylum. They also considered asylum-seekers who were coming from war-torn countries. On the difference between long terms residence permit and permanent residence permit, Mr McKay responded that the main concern was that it could not be automatic to acquire citizenship. There should be a procedure to acquire citizenship. Naturalisation could not be made on the basis of number of years stayed in the country. People should be allowed to apply for a long-term stay instead of granting them one-term permanent residents. In closure, the Chairperson remarked that statistics should be provided for those individuals who graduated to become citizens on the basis of love (i.e. spouse) or the number of years stayed in the country. There was a lot of work that had to be done to ensure that the White Paper was implementable. It was a prerequisite to know everyone who was in the country in order to identify and trace those who were criminals or committing crimes or high risk migrants. The meeting was adjourned. V.4078

More Related Articles

03. Dec. 2017 Politics Web

344 547 foreign nationals overstay visitor visas in 2016

Zimbabweans are main culprits, followed by Mozambicans and Malawians Minister Dlodlo must immediately resolve dire inefficiencies at Home Affairs In a reply to a DA Parliamentary question, Home Affairs Minister, Ayanda Dlodlo, revealed that at least 344 547 foreign nationals failed to leave South Africa before or on the date their visas were set to expire. V.4118

Click here for full article
23. Nov. 2017 Tourism Update

Cyber piracy strikes at tourism

Cyber piracy in the tourism industry is fast becoming a major problem, with websites mimicking those of legitimate reserves and lodges. A concerned reader recently alerted Tourism Update to the growing prevalence of cyber piracy within the tourism sector, with companies creating websites that mimic those of reserves and lodges in order to mislead travellers into booking with them instead. V.4113

Click here for full article
20. Nov. 2017 Tourism Update

SA Chinese arrivals outlook

2016 was a bumper year for Chinese arrivals for various reasons, not the least of which was the very low selling price of some of the bottom-end packages offered. While Chinese arrivals in South Africa saw a dip in the first few months of this year, the industry reports that the market has now stabilised and is forecast for growth. V.4108

Click here for full article
20. Nov. 2017 Tourism Update

FlySafair Durban-Eastern Cape routes to boost tourism

Any new route coming into an airport stimulates travel, trade and tourism,` says Terence Delomoney, GM of King Shaka International Airport. FlySafair recently launched a Durban-Port Elizabeth route, and a Durban-East London service will launch on November 27. Bookings are open for both routes. V.4111

Click here for full article
18. Nov. 2017 Perth Now

Evil 8 member David Volmer to be kicked out of Australia after prison release

FORMER Christian pastor and Evil 8 paedophile ring member David Volmer will be turfed out of the country as soon as he is released from jail in WA. Volmer is one of dozens of WA child sex predators who have had their visas cancelled under the Turnbull Government’s hardline stance on deporting criminals on character grounds. V.4104

Click here for full article
16. Nov. 2017 Times Live

Mashaba urges Dlodlo to act on migrant influx

Dlodlo and her department have just over a week to detail their plan to deal with illegal immigrants in Joburg or face court action The City of Johannesburg said on Thursday that the Department of Home Affairs’s inaction on illegal immigration had led to “overwhelming prejudice and hardship” for the city. V.4102

Click here for full article
16. Nov. 2017 Tourism Update

Just launched: ‘Huge’ initiative to boost Chinese arrivals to SA

"The brand awareness this initiative is creating is massive I don’t think South Africa has done anything this big in China before." To cement trade ties, boost investment flows and encourage tourism between South Africa and China, Standard Bank and the Industrial Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) have launched the I Go South Africa loyalty programme in partnership with South African Tourism. V.4110

Click here for full article
5. Nov. 2017 EWN

Home Affairs monitoring borders in wake of Zim political tension

CAPE TOWN - The Home Affairs Department says it's on high alert on the country's northern borders in the wake of political instability in Zimbabwe. Speaking at Parliament on Wednesday, Deputy Minister Fatima Chohan says the government is not anticipating a huge amount of movement of people at this time. The United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in Southern Africa says it's in constant contact with counterparts in Zimbabwe, who report that the situation is calm. V.4098

Click here for full article
15. Nov. 2017 Sowetan Live

Ordinary Zimbabweans tell us why they want to emigrate

Emigration from Zimbabwe is soaring as ordinary residents despair at the imploding economy and political instability‚ even before the current political turmoil. A month ago‚ the publication's Harare correspondent Nhlalo Ndaba filed this report‚ which we republish today to bring perspective to the unfolding situation: Ahead of Zimbabwe’s general elections‚ scheduled to be held around August 2018‚ the economy is imploding and some professionals as well as ordinary Zimbabweans have lost faith in a political solution and are now looking for greener pastures. V.4101

Click here for full article
14. Nov. 2017 Swazi Observer

PS MASILELA, CHIEF IMMIGRATION OFFICER MUST BE REMOVED FROM HOME AFFAIRS

Home Affairs Principal Secretary (PS) Anthony Masilela and Acting Chief Immigration Officer Makhosi Simelane should be transferred from the ministry of home affairs. This was said in the House of Assembly when Zombodze Emuva MP Titus Thwala moved that the House adopt the report of the select committee investigating the influx of illegal immigrants, particularly of Asian origin. V.4095

Click here for full article
07. Nov. 2017 SA Gov News

Inflow of migrants pushes population to 53 million Stats SA

Cape Town South Africa’s population is estimated to have grown to just under 53 million by the middle of this year, with an inflow of migrants behind much of the 1.2 million population increase since the 2011 Census, Statistician General Pali Lehohla said today. V.4089

Click here for full article
06. Nov. 2017 Durban Tourism tackles accommodation fraud with app

Durban Tourism tackles accommodation fraud with app

The Durban Tourism Accommodation app contains information of 732 eThekwini accommodations. In a bid to reduce fraudulent accommodation establishments, the tourism authority launched the Durban Tourism Accommodation app which contains information of 732 eThekwini accommodations, ranging from three to five star for potential visitors. V.4086

Click here for full article
01. Nov. 2017 Voice of America

Burundian Refugees: It's Not Safe to Go Home

Political unrest and violence prompted more than 400,000 people to flee Burundi and relocate to nearby countries, primarily Rwanda, Uganda and Tanzania. Despite appeals from Burundi and other central African countries to leave their camps and repatriate, Burundian political refugees say they wouldn’t feel safe going back home. Refugees who spoke to VOA say they fear government persecution if they return to Burundi, where President Pierre Nkurunziza remains in power after defying both domestic and international opposition to pursue a third term in 2015. Voice of America reporter Edward Rwema interviews Jacqueline Nduwayezu , 47-year-old mother of six in Mahama Refugee camp, which is home to more than 54,000 Burundian refugees in easter Rwanda. One such refugee is Jacqueline Nduwayezu, a former secondary school teacher who is now living with her six children in the Mahama refugee camp in eastern Rwanda. We are here because there is no security in our country, Nduwayezu told a VOA Central Afri V.4084

Click here for full article
31. Oct. 2017 Tourism Update

August arrivals sees growth dip slightly and France powers ahead

August overseas arrivals grew by 9% year-to-date on 2016 figures, in comparison to July’s 10%. Stats SA’s latest tourism and migration report reveals that August 2017 saw slowed growth in arrivals in comparison to July 2017 August overseas arrivals grew by 9% year-to-date on 2016 figures, in comparison to July’s 10%. V.4082

Click here for full article
30. Oct. 2017 African Independent

SA law saves the neck of Botswana man

THE South African constitution, which outlaws the death sentence, has saved a Botswana citizen from possibly hanging if convicted of a murder charge in his country. Keitekile Jampe, with the help of Lawyers for Human Rights, turned to the high court in Pretoria for an urgent order that he be released from the Lindela Repatriation Camp in Krugersdorp, where he has been detained for more than 430 days pending extradition to Botswana. But Jampe said that if he goes back to his country of origin, he might be hanged. The Botswana police are looking for him in connection with a charge of murder. V.4088

Click here for full article
27. Oct. 2017

UK asylum seekers living in 'squalid, unsafe slum conditions'

Asylum seekers arriving in the UK are forced to live in 'squalid, unsafe, slum housing conditions' and the public is largely unaware of the conditions into which 'traumatised people are routinely dumped', charities have said.

The £600m government contract to provide shelter for those seeking sanctuary in the UK goes up for tender next month as calls mount for for urgent reforms.< V.4076

Click here for full article
27. Oct. 2017 Tourism Update

Sarah Niemand’s ‘eet plekkie’

Sarah Niemand’s ‘eet plekkie’ (small eatery), Blinkwater, is the definition of an authentic, culinary experience. The property is situated in the fishing hamlet of Buffelsjagbaai, 25km outside Gansbaai in the Western Cape. Sarah welcomes guests into the small dining room of her wooden home and serves them traditionally cooked seafood dishes. Inge Altona-de Klerk, Head of Marketing at the neighbouring White Shark Projects, says there are only about 700 people living in the village, who all depend on the sea for their survival. "Blinkwater is an incredible opportunity for travellers to become immersed in Buffelsjagbaai’s culture and traditions. Sarah Niemand is a warm and entertaining host, always ready with a story. Everything about the experience is authentic and transformative and offers the opportunity to break down social barriers." V.4081

Click here for full article
23. Oct. 2017 Buzz South Africa

SA Unemployment Issues: This Is How The Guptas ‘Steal’ Jobs From South Africans

Latest report has shown that the Gupta family’s influence on the South African Home Affairs Department may have caused the increasing loss of jobs in the country. The report says there were many qualified South Africans out of employment who could have done this work had the Gupta family not captured the Home Affairs Department. V.4073

Click here for full article
17. Oct. 2017 Tourism Update

Foreign workers to bear brunt of proposed changes to SA immigration policy

Proposed changes to SA immigration policy with see companies having to fork out more. With an overhaul of South Africa’s immigration system imminent and uncertainty over the impact of some of the proposed changes, concerns are being expressed and companies are advised to keep a close watch. Liesl Venter finds out more. V.4072

Click here for full article
17. Oct. 2017 Tourism Update

Cape’s spectacular growth set to continue with imminent air capacity increase

Cape Town has seen double digit growth of international arrivals from Germany, Switzerland and Austria in the first half of this year. Austrian Airlines, Lufthansa, Edelweiss and Eurowings will be adding or increasing frequency to Cape Town in the coming months. Announcing the re-introduction of Austrian Airlines to South African skies, Wesgro CEO, Tim Harris, said the demand for direct routes to Cape Town from key European markets was growing. V.4083

Click here for full article
13. Oct. 2017 Business Times

Migrant bungling by home affairs officials hampers job creation

The Department of Home Affairs is duty-bound under administrative law to process overdue applications within a reasonable time After two successive quarters of decline, the South African economy spluttered back to life in the second quarter with 2.5% GDP growth quarter on quarter. However, the country’s inability to stimulate job creation is putting it on a collision course with a sustained recessionary period, which spells disaster. V.4067 Click here for full article

Click here for full article
10. Oct. 2017 Sa Migration

Hilarious travel complaints

We all know these travellers. They’re the type that really want to get away from it all, but honestly don’t deserve the privilege. Thankfully, their ridiculous complaints, compiled by Klaudia’s Corner, make for a great pick-me-up on a Monday. 1. ‘They should not allow topless sunbathing on the beach. It was very distracting for my husband who just wanted to relax.’ 2.‘On my holiday to Goa in India, I was disgusted to find that almost every restaurant served curry. I don’t like spicy food.’ 3.‘We went on holiday to Spain and had a problem with the taxi drivers as they were all Spanish.’ V.4066

Click here for full article
05. Oct. 2017 Times Live

Citizenship is hard to come by for skilled immigrants who create jobs

Immigration attorney to challenge in court the unlawful and arbitrary 10-year permanent residency regulation Almost seven years ago, I arrived in SA as a 24-year-old unemployed university graduate from Israel and the US. I had met my then South African partner while on holiday in Cape Town, and due to the US Defence of Marriage Act, which forbade US citizens from sponsoring same-sex partners for green cards, our only option was for him to sponsor me to move to SA as his life partner on a temporary residence visa. V.4068

Click here for full article
03. Oct. 2017 Groundup

Court decision a victory for asylum seekers

The ruling by the Supreme Court of Appeal that the Cape Town Refugee Reception Office must be opened is a victory for asylum seekers. The court found that the director-general of the Department of Home Affairs had used his power unlawfully. On 29 September, the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) found the decision of the director-general of the Department of Home Affairs to close the Cape Town Refugee Reception Office to be unlawful and set the decision aside; overturning a High Court decision. The SCA ordered the Department of Home Affairs to re-open the office within six months. This is the second time that the closure of the Cape Town Refugee Reception Office has come before the Supreme Court of Appeal. The director-general (DG) first decided to close the office in 2012; however, the decision was set aside by the High Court and an order given that the office must be re-opened. V.4064

Click here for full article
02. Oct. 2017 MoneyWebb

Spain emerging as top investment for South Africans

As more South Africans look to invest in property abroad, Spain’s golden visa programme is offering them one of the best deals in global real estate. With the Spanish property market in full growth phase and Spain’s GDP growth nearly double the Eurozone average at 3.2%, Spanish real estate is emerging as a strong investment for foreign nationals. For South Africans looking to buy property overseas, the benefits of investing in the Spanish market are two-fold; buyers can make a return on their investment and can easily rent their second home to either locals or the millions of tourists who visit Spain each year. V.4060

Click here for full article
28. Sep. 2017 CPA

Home Affairs: a production-industry partner

RSA visa applications just got easier for foreign production stakeholders If you’ve ever brought a foreign client or production specialist into the country for a shoot, you know how complicated visa acquisition can be. And in the fast-paced production industry, with specialists constantly on the go, you don’t always have the time or the means to meet the requirements, like regular travellers do. V.4062

Click here for full article
25. Sep. 2017 Sa Migration

A growing need for specialised immigration practitioners

RSA visa applications just got easier for foreign production stakeholders If you’ve ever brought a foreign client or production specialist into the country for a shoot, you know how complicated visa acquisition can be. And in the fast-paced production industry, with specialists constantly on the go, you don’t always have the time or the means to meet the requirements, like regular travellers do. V.4062

Click here for full article
21. Sep. 2017 Sa Migration

You have overstayed your Visa, now What!!!

Overstaying ones visa is a common occurrence among expats in South Africa and in recent months overstaying one visa has moved from being a minor inconvenience to a possible criminal offence with potentially serious ramifications. The changes brought about by the new immigration laws have made overstaying ones visa a very serious affair which needs a careful and smart approach to remedy. In this article we will explore the effect of overstaying ones visa and what steps to take to correct this now serious matter. V.4052

Click here for full article
20. Sep. 2017 Fin24

Why Treasury wants to keep the 183 day rule for expat taxpayers

Cape Town National Treasury believes that the 183 day threshold for South Africans working outside the country should remain in the proposed amendments to the tax laws. National Treasury is in the process of repealing tax exemption laws on income earned by South Africans working overseas through two bills, the 2017 Taxation Laws Amendment Bill and the 2017 Draft Tax Administration Laws Amendment Bill. If planned new legislation goes through Parliament, South Africans who work overseas could be taxed locally for foreign earnings from March 1 2020. V.405

Click here for full article
12. Sep. 2017 Groundup

Refugee children miss school to renew asylum permits

"My mom says I should be strong, but my feet always hurt from standing in the long queues" - grade 4 child Chido, Esther and Irvin, aged 12, ten and six respectively, are missing school. Instead of going to class they are queuing at the Desmond Tutu Refugee Centre in Pretoria to renew their asylum-seeking papers. "I grew up in these long queues, coming to get our asylum papers," says Chido. Her family is originally from Zimbabwe but Chido was born in South Africa. To date her family has not yet been granted refugee status. She says t V.4055

Click here for full article
11. Sep. 2017 The Citizen

Firms with foreigners doing work incompatible with visas can be fined

Institute for Race Relations CEO Frans Cronje said it was always a good thing to attract highly skilled migrants, particularly those who start businesses. The head of immigration at Immigration & Business Solutions, Sue-Allan Mehl, told The Citizen there was a serious skills shortage in South Africa in a number of fields. Yet it seems from the Gupta e-mails that the Department of Home Affairs barely understands its own paperwork, issuing visitors visas for people coming to work here and work visas for people in one capacity who are ultimately employed in another. V.4090

Click here for full article
14. Jul. 2017 The Witness

Immigrant pupils fear expulsion

Immigrant pupils in the city fear expulsion after they were asked to submit either a South African identity document, a valid passport or study permit to their schools. V.4047

Click here for full article
14. Jul. 2017 Times Live

Angolan former refugees exempted

Government brought brief relief to Angolan former refugees when it granted a blanket exemption to those who qualified but would not provide reasons why it was limited to a period of four years. V.4049

Click here for full article
07. Jul. 2017 Traveler 24

Home Affairs closed this weekend as wage dispute continues

Cape Town - If you were planning to collect your passport, smart-card ID or visa documents on Saturday, best you make alternative plans. V.4044

Click here for full article
30. Jun. 2017 The Citizen

Constitutional Court protects rights of detained immigrants

This despite the fact that it will now become very expensive to process the arrests of undocumented migrants. Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR) has welcomed a unanimous Constitutional Court ruling upholding the rights of all detainees also alleged illegal immigrants to access our courts. V.4041

Click here for full article
27. Jun. 2017 IOL

Home Affairs faces 50 new lawsuits every week

Johannesburg - The Home Affairs Department is being slapped with about 50 cases of litigation on a weekly basis, deputy director-general for institutional planning and support Thulani Mavuso said. V.4039

Click here for full article
25. Jun. 2017 Fin 24

5 ways Cape Town and Western Cape plan to maintain investor confidence

Cape Town After engaging with stakeholders the Western Cape investment agency Wesgro has set out five ways in which investor confidence can be maintained in Cape Town and the Western Cape after SA recent credit ratings downgrades by ratings agencies. V.4037

Click here for full article
24. Jun. 2017 Timeslive

Over 90% of Home Affairs offices closed on Saturday

Over 90% of the Department of Home Affairs offices were not operating on Saturday despite a settlement agreement reached with trade unions just over a week ago the department confirmed. V.4036

Click here for full article
20. Jun. 2017 Citizen

Home affairs to brief parliament on Guptas’ naturalisation

The department maintains the application to grant the controversial family citizenship was lawful. V.4029

Click here for full article
20. Jun. 2017 The Daily Vox

South Africa’s borders may become even more unwelcoming to asylum seekers

Asylum seekers may face greater difficulties entering South Africa once Parliament enacts legislation to create a new agency that will have full control of the country’s borders and ports, and once the department of home affairs opens new processing centres for asylum seekers. V.4032

Click here for full article
18. Jun. 2017 Daily Maverick

MPs call for Gigaba testimony after home affairs minister DG fail to appear

Within 10 years Home Affairs wants to be at the centre of South Africas security and economic development. To fulfill its vision the departments recently published discussion document proposes raising own funds by requiring institutions from public schools and hospitals universities but also banks conveyance attorneys and airlines to verify a persons identity against a fee with Home Affairs’ biometric database before accessing services. The document also proposes raising funds through identity verification provided to the commercial sector. This move into the heart of governments security cluster may just turn into a nightmare. By MARIANNE MERTEN. V.4025

Click here for full article
18. Jun. 2017 Daily Maverick

Whose democracy is it anyway? Home Affairs’ chilling move on your money, and your freedom

Within 10 years Home Affairs wants to be at the centre of South Africas security and economic development. To fulfill its vision the departments recently published discussion document proposes raising own funds by requiring institutions from public schools and hospitals universities but also banks conveyance attorneys and airlines to verify a persons identity against a fee with Home Affairs’ biometric database before accessing services. The document also proposes raising funds through identity verification provided to the commercial sector. This move into the heart of governments security cluster may just turn into a nightmare. By MARIANNE MERTEN. V.4025

Click here for full article
17. Jun. 2017 ENCA

Home Affairs Dept ordered to appear in Parly over Guptas SA citizenship

JOHANNESBURG - Parliaments portfolio committee on home affairs has ordered the Home Affairs Department to appear before it and provide details around the naturalisation of the Gupta family. V.4021

Click here for full article
15. Jun. 2017 Destiny Reporter

New Home Affairs says Gigaba granted Gupta’s citizenship lawfully

Former Minister of Home Affairs Malusi Gigaba did nothing wrong in granting the Gupta family South African citizenship, his successor Hlengiwe Mkhize said on Wednesday "I have looked at all the documentation and I thought [that] if I was in a similar position I would have considered the request in a favourable manner," Mkhize said, adding that there was therefore no reason to investigate the matter further. V.4023

Click here for full article
12. Jun. 2017 Daily Maverick and News24

#GuptaLeaks: Delhi Daredevils staff member contacted Guptas for SA visa assistance

Leaked emails show that a visa application for somebody connected to the Delhi Daredevils cricket team was expedited when the side made it to the semi-finals of the Champions League T20 tournament in South Africa in 2012. But only after he had contacted Ajay Gupta directly Much has been written about Malusi Gigabas time as home affairs minister. Particularly how a senior Gupta employee Ashu Chawla repeatedly asked officials to fast-track visas to benefit Gupta businesses. Now further leaks show that these officials were pulling favours even before he took up the post. V.4017

Click here for full article
30. Nov. 2017 Tourism Update

SA September arrivals increase Brazil, France continue to perform

A year-on-year comparison between 2016 and 2017 for Q3 shows that the number of overseas tourists increased by 5%. September arrivals increased by 2,1% year-to-date, from 1 273 734 in September 2016 to 1 300 502 in September 2017. A month-to-month comparison indicates a small drop of 0,1%, from August 2017’s figure of 1 302 312 V.4117

Click here for full article
21. Nov. 2017 News 24

Tweets over ID book validity false - Home Affairs

Johannesburg The Department of Home Affairs has dismissed as false, tweets claiming that the green, barcoded, South African identity book was reaching the end of its lifespan. 'No such announcement has been made by the department. We wish to make it clear that the green barcoded ID book remains a legal form of identification and will continue to be until such time that the live capture system is rolled out to all home affairs offices to enable South Africans to apply for the smart ID cards at their nearest offices,' department spokesperson David Hlabane said. V.4112

Click here for full article
20. Nov. 2017 Tourism Update

Rwanda: Visas on arrival for all

Rwanda is among the countries that have taken a leading role in implementing the AU's recommendations. From January 1, 2018, all travellers to Rwanda, regardless of nationality, will get a 30-day visa on arrival without prior application. Rwandans with dual nationality are now allowed to use National IDs on entry. V.4109

Click here for full article
18. Nov. 2017 Times Live

Zuma launches 'one stop shop' to facilitate foreign investment

President Jacob Zuma on Saturday opened a one stop shop in Durban as part of attempts to simplify doing business in SA. President Jacob Zuma realised one of his presidential prerogatives on Saturday when he launched a one stop shop to encourage more foreign and local investment in KwaZulu-Natal. V.4103

Click here for full article
18. Nov. 2017 Mercopress

UK and France Home ministers emphasize security and law enforcement cooperation

UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd and the Minister of the Interior of France, Gerard Collomb, met in London on Friday and discussed a range of home affairs matters including joint efforts to fight terrorism, illegal migration, border security and efforts to tackle serious and organized crime. V.4105

Click here for full article
16. Nov. 2017 Cape Argus

New refugee documents welcomed

Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Fatima Chohan says machine-readable travel documents are more secure. Picture: Brenton Geach Cape Town - The government has introduced a new way to better manage its refugee and asylum seekers with an improved refugee travel document. The new machine-readable travel document for refugees has been designed and developed using the latest passport production technology and security standards. V.4106

Click here for full article
15. Nov. 2017 The South African

South Africans and the UK Visitor Visa

With the very large South African community living in the UK, it is no surprise that we receive many queries on the UK Visitor Visa. Grandparents, parents, friends, and family all want to visit those fortunate enough to live in the UK. There is also a large number of persons wanting to visit the UK to explore business and job opportunities, before making a final decision about moving to the UK. Do South Africans need a UK Visitor Visa to travel to the UK? South African nationals are regarded as visa nationals by the UK Government. All South African citizens thus need to apply for UK Visitor Visas, before traveling to the UK. V.4097

Click here for full article
15. Nov. 2017 Times Live

8 things you need to know about the Zimbabwean exemption permit

Zimbabweans whose seven-year special dispensation visas will run out in December‚ have been given a reprieve. Many had feared they would have to return to Zimbabwe‚ leaving their jobs and homes behind. However, the South Africa government announced that Zimbabweans on special dispensation visas‚ which were issued in 2010 and expire in December‚ can apply for new visas called Zimbabwe Exemption Permits (ZEP). V.4100

Click here for full article
15. Nov. 2017 EWN

Home Affairs introduces new machine-readable travel documents for refugees

Home Affairs Deputy Minister Fatima Chohan says that the new documents are more secure and should facilitate safer travel for refugees. The Home Affairs Department has introduced a new machine-readable travel document for refugees. V.4107

Click here for full article
14. Nov. 2017 SA Good News

School Exchanges SA Leading Destination?

This week I received a letter from Jackie Verall in the UK who runs school exchange programmes. "I was wondering if I could bore the pants off you with an editorial or a blog about how my little UK company is cutting a swathe through Europe offering high school experiences in South Africa. No, it’s not a plug for my business but just to say how South Africa is booming in Europe and kids are coming a plenty to study and experience the great South African way." V.4096

Click here for full article
06. Nov. 2017 Tourism Update

Mozambique visa update: requirements for non-SADC cruise passengers

Non-SADC cruise passengers visiting the Mozambique islands will need to obtain a visa prior to arrival. Non-SADC passengers onboard the MSC Sinfonia were previously granted visas onboard when stopping in Mozambique, however the Mozambican government informed the company on October 30 that this is no longer the case and that non-SADC passengers would have to obtain a visa prior to arrival. V.4085

Click here for full article
06. Nov. 2017 Sowetan Live

Rush to land legal status in SA

Thousands of Zimbabweans have to queue for hours in a desperate race against time to retain their legal status in South Africa. An estimated 200000 Zimbabweans working in South Africa use legal Special Dispensation Permits that expire on the last day of the year. However, former minister of Home Affairs Hlengiwe Mkhize offered a last-minute reprieve, allowing them to apply for a new work permit - the Zimbabwean Exemption Permit - by November 30. V.4087

Click here for full article
31. Oct. 2017 Tourism Update

August arrivals sees growth dip slightly and France powers ahead

August overseas arrivals grew by 9% year-to-date on 2016 figures, in comparison to July’s 10%. Stats SA’s latest tourism and migration report reveals that August 2017 saw slowed growth in arrivals in comparison to July 2017 August overseas arrivals grew by 9% year-to-date on 2016 figures, in comparison to July’s 10%. V.4079

Click here for full article
30. Oct. 2017 Tourism Update

Mozambique: new visa requirements for non-SADC passport holders

Non-SADC passport holders require a visa for Mozambique, which must be obtained prior to departure. MSC Cruises Immigration Officer on board MSC Sinfonia has advised that with immediate effect, all non-Southern African Development Community passport holders require a Mozambican visa. V.4080

Click here for full article
27. Oct. 2017 EWN

Apleni ruling could have consequences for other suspended DGs

CAPE TOWN - A court ruling setting aside the suspension of the Home Affairs Director General (DG), Mkuseli Apleni, could have consequences for two other suspended DGs. The High Court found that unless delegated by the president, ministers do not have powers to suspend DGs. V.4074

Click here for full article
27. Oct. 2017 iol.co.za

Oppenheimer-owned Fireblade wins court

Pretoria - The Oppenheimer family's company Fireblade on Friday won its legal battle in the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria when a judge declared that former Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba did indeed give the company the go-ahead to run a customs and immigration service at OR Tambo International Airport. V.4077

Click here for full article
24. Oct. 2017

White Paper on Migration: border refugee processing facilities: implementation by Home Affairs

Meeting Summary The Department of Home Affairs briefed the Committee on implementing the White Paper on International Migration including establishing one stop border posts (OSBP) and refugee processing farcicalities closer to the border. The DHA noted that in the 2016/17 financial year, it produced the White Paper on International Migration (WPIM) which was approved by the Cabinet on 29 March 2017 and gazetted on 28 July 2017 for public comment. The WPIM provided a new policy framework that would guide the comprehensive review of immigration and related legislation. Those elements of the WPIM that required administrative action was already being implemented. However, those elements of the WIPM that required major changes would not be implemented immediately pending the finalisation of a new legislation. V.4078

Click here for full article
17. Oct. 2017 Tourism Update

Foreign workers to bear brunt of proposed changes to SA immigration policy

Proposed changes to SA immigration policy with see companies having to fork out more. With an overhaul of South Africa’s immigration system imminent and uncertainty over the impact of some of the proposed changes, concerns are being expressed and companies are advised to keep a close watch. Liesl Venter finds out more. The White Paper on Immigration released by the Department of Home Affairs in July this year will introduce significant changes to the immigration landscape and, while much is still up in the air, companies can expect to fork out more. V.4071

Click here for full article
17. Oct. 2017 Tourism Update

Cape’s spectacular growth set to continue with imminent air capacity increase

Cape Town has seen double digit growth of international arrivals from Germany, Switzerland and Austria in the first half of this year. Austrian Airlines, Lufthansa, Edelweiss and Eurowings will be adding or increasing frequency to Cape Town in the coming months. Announcing the re-introduction of Austrian Airlines to South African skies, Wesgro CEO, Tim Harris, said the demand for direct routes to Cape Town from key European markets was growing. V.4075

Click here for full article
14. Oct. 2017 City Press

Zimbabwean diaspora in SA loses interest in Zim affairs

Zimbabweans who have fled economic hardship and political problems to fend for their families in South Africa have lost interest in the affairs of their country. They did not care who was sacked this week by President Robert Mugabe or who was appointed to his newly reshuffled Cabinet, saying their country’s woes required economic policies that would ease the hardships faced by their families back home. V.4070

Click here for full article
11. Oct. 2017 Times Live

Queues of desperation: Zimbabweans race against time for work permits

LONG WAIT Desperate Zimbabweans seeking work permits queue for hours outside the Visa Facilitation Services office in Midrand Thousands of Zimbabweans have to queue for hours in a desperate race against time to retain their legal status in South Africa. An estimated 200,000 working Zimbabweans in South Africa use legal Special Dispensation Permits that expire on the last day of the year. However, former minister of Home Affairs Hlengiwe Mkhize gave a last-minute reprieve, allowing them to apply for a new work permit - the Zimbabwean Exemption Permit - by November 30. V.4099

Click here for full article
06. Oct. 2017 Tourism Update

SA experiences lacklustre season for Indian arrivals

South African visa efficiency major factor contributing to decline in Indian arrivals. This year, SA saw a lacklustre season for Indian arrivals surprising everyone after last year’s growth. Industry specialists share the factors that have resulted in this dip in the market. Johan Groenewald, MD of Royal African Discoveries, says there are a number of reasons why Indian arrivals are down. "The first thing we have to take into consideration is that 2016 was an exceptional year, the growth was remarkable, and so we shouldn’t expect to see the same numbers as last year. V.4065

Click here for full article
05. Oct. 2017 The Citizen

Migration issues highly politicised home affairs minister

South Africa is grappling with balancing entry for skilled migrants and refugees with creating jobs for its 27.7% unemployed citizens. Migration issues were "highly politicised" because they involved power relations and contestation for space and scarce resources, that’s according to the minister of home affairs, Professor Hlengiwe Mkhize. "Migration issues are highly politicised, they are about power relations amongst those who are migrating and the receiving countries. It’s about contestation of space and scarce resources," she said. Mkhize was speaking at the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Westville campus in Durban on Thursday during a dialogue on the management of international migration. V.4069

Click here for full article
02. Oct. 2017 Mail & Guardian

Zimbabweans get four-year grace

Zimbabweans have become part of South Africa’s fabric. There are anywhere between one and three million Zimbabweans living and working in the country. More than 200 000 Zimbabweans are here on a special visa that will expire at the end of the year. Although government has outlined paths for them to remain in the country legally, the process is clouded by confusion and bureaucratic hurdles. V.4059

Click here for full article
02. Oct. 2017 Tourism Update

July Arrivals: The verdict is in

Stats SA has released its latest tourism and migration report and the verdict on July arrivals is in. Total arrivals are up by 2% and overseas arrivals are up 10%, with Central and South America leading the charge at 90% year-to-date growth. Brazil arrivals continue to grow exponentially with a year-to-date increase of 119%, as 17 524 arrivals in 2016 increased to 38 460 arrivals in 2017. Argentina isn’t far behind Brazil, at an 89% year-to-date increase and a 71% month-to-month increase. While Mexico has shown a 42% year-to-date increase. V.4061

Click here for full article
28. Sep. 2017 Cape Times

Visa changes keep immigrants offside

So the Supreme Court of Appeal found earlier this week. The judgment comes after Home Affairs Minister Hlengiwe Buhle Mkhize and department director-general Mkuseli Apleni appealed a previous high court ruling that asylum seekers were entitled to apply for visitors and work visas while in the country. The matter was brought to the Western Cape High Court in 2003 by the Legal Resources Centre on behalf of 13 asylum seekers. It was settled, and an order, which came to be known as the "Dabone Order", was agreed on between the parties. Following the Dabone Order, the director-general soon issued a directive that asylum seekers in possession of a permit could apply for one of the temporary residence permits, as well as permanent residency. V.4063

Click here for full article
25. Sep. 2017 Sa Migration

Rejection and Appeals: What to do when your application has been rejected.

As with any change there comes with it a lot of miscommunication and an increase in the number of failed applications. It appears that there has been a sharp increase in the number of visa and permit application being rejected and many prospective immigrants are left to wonder how on earth they can navigate this now even more complex immigration system. In this article we will unpack the reasons why some applications get rejected and when and how to do an appeal to have the decision reviewed. V.4058

Click here for full article
20. Sep. 2017 Fin24

Why Treasury wants to keep the 183 day rule for expat taxpayers

Cape Town National Treasury believes that the 183 day threshold for South Africans working outside the country should remain in the proposed amendments to the tax laws. National Treasury is in the process of repealing tax exemption laws on income earned by South Africans working overseas through two bills, the 2017 Taxation Laws Amendment Bill and the 2017 Draft Tax Administration Laws Amendment Bill. If planned new legislation goes through Parliament, South Africans who work overseas could be taxed locally for foreign earnings from March 1 2020. V.4053

Click here for full article
20. Sep. 2017 ZIMEYE

New SA Permits Relieve Zimbos

Zimbabweans staying in South Africa have commended the host government for introducing a new four-year permit known as the Zimbabwe Exemption Permit (ZEP) for those wishing to study or work in that country. The ZEP is valid between January 1, 2018 and December 31, 2021, and replaces the Zimbabwe Special Permit (ZSP) whose lifespan expires on December 31 this year. According to South Africa’s Home Affairs Department, the ZEP facility is only available to 197 941 holders of the ZSP permit. In separate interviews yesterday, Zimbabweans said the new development brought about an end to months of speculation on reports that the country was introducing tough measures for immigrants. "This is a relief to the thousands of Zimbabweans who have endured several months of speculation on their status at the expiry of the ZSP," said Mr Giyani Dube a representative of Zimbabweans staying in South Africa. V.4056

Click here for full article
11. Sep. 2017 Tourism Update

German arrivals on the up

German arrivals continue to grow, even during SA’s winter months. German visitors to South Africa have increased by 15% according to the latest report released by Statistics SA. The German market has shown a steady increase over the last few months, with arrivals up by 24% for the month of June compared with June last year. Growth in May was 5% and April 15.91%. V.4051

Click here for full article
11. Sep. 2017 Times Live

Home Affairs can’t explain kids allegedly smuggled out of SA

The Department of Home Affairs has no idea how a British national managed allegedly to smuggle his three children from Johannesburg through the Lebombo border post into Mozambique without their mother's consent. Despite the Department of Home Affairs’ stringent laws on children travelling in and out of the country‚ the department still has no idea how a British national managed allegedly to smuggle his three children from Johannesburg through the Lebombo border post into Mozambique without their mother's consent. V.4091

Click here for full article
14. Jul. 2017 Times Live

Angolan former refugees

Government brought brief relief to Angolan former refugees when it granted a blanket exemption to those who qualified but would not provide reasons why it was limited to a period of four years. V.4048

Click here for full article
07. Jul. 2017 Business Tech

How home affairs plans to collect and use your personal data

One of the key proposals of the document is a complete restructuring of Home Affairs, taking steps towards becoming completely self-sustainable. V.4042

Click here for full article
30. Jun. 2017 The Citizen

Constitutional Court protects rights of detained immigrants

This despite the fact that it will now become very expensive to process the arrests of undocumented migrants. Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR) has welcomed a unanimous Constitutional Court ruling upholding the rights of all detainees also alleged illegal immigrants to access our courts. V.4040

Click here for full article
27. Jun. 2017 Tourism Update

Industry reacts to Rwandan permit increase

Rwandas permit hikes may be in response to the surge in high-end tourism development. The recent doubling of Rwandas gorilla permits from 0 to rdaddphp 500 has resulted in concerns from some operators over the potential impact of the increase. V.4038

Click here for full article
26. Jun. 2017 Business Tech

Home Affairs wants to start collecting and selling your personal data and charging for it

On 30 June, the ANC’s National Executive Committee will meet to review ANC policy and makes recommendations on amendments or new policies to the National Conference. V.4043

Click here for full article
24. Jun. 2017

ALERT: Home Affairs services hard-hit due to insufficient staff

Cape Town - The Department of Home Affairs confirms that over 90% of DHA offices are closed on Saturday due to insufficient staff numbers which Home Affairs says is not inline with the recent settlement agreement with the Unions. V.4033

Click here for full article
20. Jun. 2017 TimesLIVE

South Africas asylum seeker figures questioned

South Africa has been singled out for the skewed figures representing the latest global asylum-seeker population according to the UN Human Rights Council. V.4027

Click here for full article
20. Jun. 2017 Times Live

Uprooted Zimbabweans may soon be forced to leave SA

Zimbabweans who came to South Africa after the economic collapse of 2008 are facing the threat of having to uproot themselves once more as their visas expire. V.4031

Click here for full article
20. Jun. 2017 Times Live

SA promises to improve processing of refugees on World Refugee Day

South Africa has offered hope for refugees and asylum seekers promising to digitise its systems to make their lives easier. Home affairs deputy minister Fatima Chohan said the department would soon be introducing biometric smart cards for refugees similar to the new identity cards for South African citizens. V.4034

Click here for full article
19. Jun. 2017 Groundup

Refugees struggle to renew papers at Home Affairs

Cape Town - A number of refugees from Somalia say they keep getting turned away at the Customs House foreshore offices of Home Affairs when trying to renew their documents. V.4046

Click here for full article
17. Jun. 2017 ECN

Home Affairs makes U-turn on disciplinary action against workers

Home Affairs agreed to enter negotiation with unions after the Bargaining Councils conciliation hearing on Thursday. without paying them overtime. V.4020

Click here for full article
16. Jun. 2017 News Ghana

SA and UNHCR to mark World Refugees Day with tolerance exercises

The Department of Home Affairs and United Nations Commission on Human Rights (UNHCR) have announced that they will jointly commemorate World Refugee Day in eThekwini Municipality to promote social cohesion, tolerance and peaceful co-existence among refugees, asylum-seekers and host communities. V.4019

Click here for full article
15. Jun. 2017 The Citizen

Gigaba hammers media for helping to peddle ‘lies’ about him

The minister alleges a paid campaign started being waged against him since he became finance minister. "We must try, to the best of our abilities, to avoid being information peddlers," Gigaba told journalists at the end of a media briefing in Pretoria on Thursday after speaking about the state of the economy. V.4024

Click here for full article
12. Jun. 2017 News 24

Gigaba pushed through Guptas SA citizenship - EFF

Cape Town - The EFF says it has received reliable information that whilst Malusi Gigaba was minister of home affairs he unduly granted the Gupta family South African citizenship. V.4018

Click here for full article

Visa Categories

Head Office

Cape Town, Tel : +27 (0) 82 373 8415

South Africa , Tel : +27 (0) 74 036 6127

Email : info@sami.co.za

Download Brochure About South Africa

Articles

11. Aug. 2015 Business Day

Bill opens asylum seekers' hearings to public

THE media and the public will now be allowed to attend asylum seekers' appeals when conducted following the adoption of the Refugee Amendment Bill. V.3151

Click here for full article

Testimonials

Testimonials are the best way we can show how satisfied our clients are with us and they are our best advertisement. Just look what our clients have to say about SAMI!

"This is so great, I have now been out and gotten us not only one but two bottles of Graham Beck! At least one of the glasses will be drunk as a salute to you and Rod and everyone else at SAMI!

Thank you so much for all your help, your help has really been more than invaluable to us!"

Jennifer and Jimmy Wahlberg - Sweden
Read More

Free Newsletters

Newsletters are always the best way to keep our clients informed of the rapid changes in the immigration world and we can update you in this regard by your subscribing to our free newsletter.

SAMI issues a monthly Newsletter to update you on topical immigration and related matters that we believe you should be aware of especially with regard to the procedures and rules pertaining thereto. These newsletters will provide you with useful information on any aspect of life related to immigration and relocation. If you are interested in a visa or just to visit you should subscribe to the Free Newsletter service of SAMI.

Enhance your knowledge
Get Subscription