Another Dalai Lama drama looms

2011-12-04 10:00
Johannesburg - The department of home affairs has suggested in court papers that the Dalai Lama won't be granted a visa to visit South Africa in the near future.

For the first time the department has explained why it delayed giving the ­Tibetan spiritual leader a visa to attend Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu's birthday celebrations in October.

IFP leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi and Cope leader Mosiuoa Lekota filed court papers to ask for an order to force the department to consider giving a ­visa to the Dalai Lama for a planned event in March next year.

In his reply, home affairs director general Mkhuseli Apleni said the ­department had to consider South ­Africa's relations with China.

September's visa application was handled by Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma herself "in view of the impact that the Dalai ­Lama's visa application would have had on trade and foreign relations".

He said China had invested in South African business sectors like telecommunications and mining. China had also recently supported South Africa's request to join the ­economic grouping of Brics, while Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe conducted a ­"successful visit" to ­China.

South ­Africa also feared a backlash from ­China similar to those experienced by France and Australia when they ­allowed the Dalai Lama to visit.

He said the Dalai Lama was granted a visa in 1996 because the government had only adopted the "One China ­Policy" in 1998.

According to this ­policy the government of the People's Republic of China was the sole legal government, representing the whole of China.

The Dalai Lama wanted Tibet to be independent and was considered a terrorist by China. The Dalai Lama's office had written to the South African government in ­August, asking for the courtesies ­accorded to a person of his stature, as well as for the necessary security ­arrangements.

Apleni denied that Dlamini-Zuma was dictated to by China in this regard.

She was still busy making a decision when the Dalai Lama cancelled his trip early in October. Apleni said the Dalai Lama's application was incomplete, because he could initially not submit his original passport and wanted ­exemption from the administrative fees.

The Dalai Lama's representative in Africa, Sonam Tenzing, said Buthelezi's invitation had been received by the Dalai Lama's office and "a decision was pending".

The case is set down to be heard in the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday.

NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com 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
37 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

 
SPONSORED CONTENT
Investment tips you need to know 2015-01-29 14:07

Ever wondered how to assess your future potential liability? Feroz Basa, Senior Portfolio Manager Old Mutual Investment Group, weighs in on all the investment tips you need to know. WATCH.

/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Save up to 40% on outdoor accessories!

Tents, sleeping, day packs and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Month End Madness Sale!

Save up to 60% on across a wide range of goods from books to electronics, DVDs and many more. Sale end 31 January 2015. Shop now!

Valentine’s Day gifts – 14 Feb!

Gifts to spoil him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

30% off fragrances

Get 30% off fragrances for him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off All Textbooks

Save up to 30% off an extensive range of prescribed textbooks for all major universities and FET colleges. Shop Now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Something is blocking the flow of things today and it is easy to become frustrated and pessimistic. The problem is that your mind...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

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 24.com network.

Settings

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.