Gigaba fingers crooked priests on false registrations

2014-09-28 14:40
Malusi Gigaba

Malusi Gigaba

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Pretoria - Crooked priests, corrupt officials and dishonest traditional leaders are among those responsible for many foreigners worming their way onto the National Population Register (NPR), Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba said on Sunday.

Briefing the media in Pretoria, he told reporters his department's late registration of birth programme - which after six years, will come to a close on 31 December next year - had created challenges.

While it had certainly allowed large numbers of South Africans, who had not been registered at birth, access to government services, it had also "created an avenue" for others to get their names onto the NPR.

"[It] led to many people who do not deserve South African citizenship being able to bribe their way onto the NPR, and therefore pollute the register.

"Some priests... would issue [fraudulent] baptismal certificates, some tradition leaders... would write fraudulent letters, confirming the citizenship of certain people... ," he said.

They had done so "by hook and crook", knowing for a fact that these people were not South African, and should not have been afforded an opportunity to claim citizenship, he said.

Entry on the system is the basic requirement allowing people to claim government benefits, and make application for an ID document and passport.

Responding to a question Gigaba said he could not estimate how many people were fraudulently entered onto the NPR.

However, within "the next few weeks" government would be conducting an audit of the register.

"There are a number of people who are going to be eliminated from the register, because they don't deserve to be there," he warned.

The audit process was aimed at restoring the integrity of South Africa's national population register.

"The audit will [show] how many people have entered the NPR fraudulently, and we will take necessary legal action in cases like these, including against any official who might be found to have connived in the process of offering fraudulent citizenship."

Earlier, he made a call for all new-born children to be registered at health facilities within 30 days of their birth.

He said the late birth registration programme would be discontinued from the end of next year, and late registration - while still possible - would become much more difficult from 2016 onwards, particularly for adults, with lots of questions being asked.

"We will set up screening committees. It will be a strenuous [process] for you to make it. Nobody will be precluded, but the screening will be more rigorous post 2015."

Responding to another question, Gigaba said he could not estimate the size of the current late registration backlog

"We cannot estimate how many people will come forward between now and the end of 2015."

Read more on:    home affairs  |  malusi gigaba

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

How much food do you need to concentrate?

We have been taught that we need three meals a day in order to make it through the day and while most of us indulge in more than our fair share there is a large portion of South Africans who are living off barely enough to sustain them.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.