April 06 2017 – ZIMBABWEANS in SA may have to wait a little bit longer, to know how newly appointed Home Affairs Minister Hlengiwe Mkhize, will address immigration issues and the way forward on ZSP, after saying she is for now just acquainting herself with the goings on in her new portfolio.
“I am well aware many of you would want to hear of our approach to undertaking the department’s work going-forward, but for today this is more of a meet and greet interaction.Further details of my plans will be shared with you at subsequent interactions,” says Mkhize.
About 250 000 Zimbabweans, whose permits expire at the end of this, are anxiously awaiting what decision Home Affairs will make, on whether or not to renew their permits.
However Mkhize has hinted at cracking down on corruption at entry points, with Easter holidays approaching soon.
“Security dynamics and risks in peak periods include the spectre of undocumented travellers, fraudulent documents, illegal stamping of travel documents and dealing with challenges relating to personnel integrity,” says Mkhize during a media briefing held today.(Thursday) in Pretoria
“A comprehensive operational plan to support port operations is in place and it goes with optimum law enforcement activities, as a deterrent to crime and corruption. This is based on the need to ensure the lawfulness of entry and exit of travellers at our Ports of Entry,” says Mkhize.
”What we want to see is delivery of services at ports of entry where only legitimate people and goods are allowed to enter or leave South Africa in a co-ordinated manner as envisaged by the establishment of the Border Management Authority (BMA),” says Mkhize adding that more details about BMA will be announced in “due course.”
Mkhize says with effect from 11 to 19 April 2017, entry points at busy places like Musina and OR Tambo, there would be extended operating hours and additional staff of about 200 more Home Affairs officials.
“Easter is one of the peak periods characterised by massive increases in traveller movements. Over the last four years, there has been a steady increase in traveller movement. An analysis of all movement for March and April 2012-2016, shows an increase from around 5,7 million recorded movements of citizens and foreigners in 2012, to over 7 million in 2016. Higher numbers are those of foreigners,” says Mkhize.
The other eight top ports by volume are Lebombo, Maseru Bridge, Ficksburg, Oshoek, Cape Town International Airport, Kopfontein, Ramatlabama and Golela Port of Entry.
“We trust that extending hours will go a long way in minimising burdensome queues, delays and inconveniences to travellers. This is important for citizens, and, in the broader scheme of things, for promoting South Africa as a preferred travel destination,” she says. – Patience Rusere
|06:00 – 22:00||24 hours||14 April 2017|
|06:00 – 22:00||06:00 – 00:00||16 April 2017|
|06:00 – 22:00||22:00 – 00:00||17 April 2017|