Thousands have duplicated IDs

2012-03-02 10:33
Pretoria - There are 121 000 South Africans who have more than one identity document or are sharing an identity number with someone else, home affairs officials said on Thursday.

"Currently there are 83 000 South Africans having two IDs at the same time, with a further 38 000 others sharing the same ID numbers," director general Mkuseli Apleni told reporters in Pretoria.

He said the prevalent cause of the duplicated IDs was the manner in which the department issued new green ID books after 1994.

"With the advent of democracy and the amalgamation of the various home affairs departments which served different nationalities, some information was not captured on the national population register, leading the department to issue new IDs."

Corruption and fraud

Apleni said another problem was people giving incorrect information when applying for new identity documents.

People trying to avoid paying their debts would, for example, apply for a new identity document claiming they had lost the original.

In the process they would supply the department with a new birth date, claiming the old one was incorrect, said Apleni. They would then be issued with a new ID number.

Apleni said corruption and fraud had also contributed to the number.

He said there was a trend where home affairs officials were found stealing a child's registration number and using it in an adult's new identity document.

When the child reached the age where an identity document could be issued, they would end up using the same ID number as the adult who had stolen it.

Apleni said the department would compile a list of all South Africans who were affected and ask them to approach the department to fix the problem.

"Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma is fully cognisant that these duplicate IDs create a situation in which lives of ordinary people [come] to a standstill, in that they are unable to transact with business, banks and government agencies."

Read more on:    home affairs  |  mkuseli apleni  |  corruption

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