Home Affairs vows to crackdown on back-door granting of visas, permits

Home affairs minister Aaron Motsoaledi (Image: GCIS)

  • Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi is reviewing some of the permits which have been granted irregularly over time. 
  • The Department of Home Affairs says the minister will go away no stone unturned in uncovering the “dubious” visas, permits and particular citizenships that have been irregularly granted.  
  • The division says Motsoaledi will “unpack the full details of his intervention” within the coming days.

The Department of Home Affairs says it can go away no stone unturned in uncovering “dubious” visas and permits, reminiscent of everlasting residence and particular citizenships, which have been granted irregularly. 

Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi had resolved to evaluation some of these permits that have been issued over time, particularly everlasting residence visas, the division mentioned.  

It added the choice was knowledgeable by a pattern rising from the end result of quite a few investigations it had undertaken over the previous two years, particularly these involving distinguished folks. 

The announcement got here after Motsoaledi’s interview with SAfm’s Bongi Gwala wherein he mentioned Enlightened Christian Gathering chief Shepherd Bushiri and his spouse, Mary, have been in South Africa illegally. He added the couple had entered South Africa for the primary time on 6 September 2009 on the Beitbridge border put up and have been issued with guests’ visas.

READ | Atul Gupta approaches High Court in search of to have his SA passport issued

“We don’t stop people from visiting our country. Visitors’ visas have a time frame – you can stay for 90 days or 30 days … because you’re a visitor,” Motsoaledi mentioned on the time.

However, whereas Bushiri was in South Africa in 2014, 2015 and 2016, he registered firms with the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission, it emerged.

Motsoaledi mentioned this was not allowed in phrases of the circumstances of the customer’s visa.

He mentioned in 2012, Mary had entered the nation via the OR Tambo International Airport, the place she produced an alleged fraudulent everlasting resident’s allow, which was issued on 1 February 1997.  

“Now, if you came to South Africa for the first time on 6 September 2009, how can you already have a permanent residency dating 1997?”

However, the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria suspended the division’s everlasting residence discover in opposition to Bushiri and his spouse till they pleaded of their legal trial, City Press reported.

The couple has since fled South Africa.

On Wednesday, the division mentioned: “In the coming days, the minister will unpack the full details of his intervention which he decided on late last year.

“The division will go away no stone unturned in uncovering doubtful visas and permits, reminiscent of everlasting residence and particular citizenships, which have been granted irregularly.”

Meanwhile, Motsoaledi welcomed acting Public Protector Kholeka Gcaleka’s report on the implementation of the Citizenship Act.

“As such, the minister has instructed the director-general of the division to begin making ready the motion plan which needs to be submitted to the Public Protector indicating the timelines of implementing the suggestions of the Public Protector,” the department said.

“Likewise, the minister will submit his personal motion plan as directed by the Public Protector.”

On Monday, the Public Protector’s office ordered the director-general of residence affairs to take motion in opposition to officers concerned within the naturalisation of Ajay Gupta and his household for his or her failure to train due diligence by verifying the accuracy of the knowledge contained within the motivation for early naturalisation.

Gcaleka had investigated an alleged violation of the Executives Members’ Ethics Code and SA Citizenship Act by former residence affairs minister Malusi Gigaba.News24 beforehand reported that in 2018, it emerged Gigaba had accredited the early naturalisation of Ajay Gupta’s household regardless of him refusing to let go of his Indian citizenship. 

Gigaba had on a quantity of events publicly said Atul Gupta was not a South African citizen. He then corrected himself and mentioned Atul was a citizen, and it was Ajay Gupta who had not been naturalised.

Gcaleka’s reported said Gigaba had exercised his discretion and didn’t abuse his energy within the course of. She, nonetheless, discovered him in breach of the Executive Members’ Ethics Code with regards to him failing to desk the names in Parliament of individuals who have been granted South African citizenship below distinctive circumstances.

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