SA passport: new one due in April will have secret security features

2009-03-05 00:00

Cape Town — A new South African passport with highly complex security features is to be introduced in April.

Safety and Security Minister Nathi Mthethwa said yesterday the new system is an aspect of a turnaround programme in Home Affairs to improve the security of the SA passport.

He was briefing the media on the work of the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security cluster of government departments.

Home Affairs Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said the features include watermarks and others she couldn’t divulge for security reasons.

“We have entrusted people to design new passports … and we won’t come out and divulge the security features,” she said.

Mthethwa said the counter-corruption unit continues to work, in partnership with the SA Police Service and National Intelligence Agency, to identify people involved in corruption and fraud within Home Affairs.

“During the 2008/09 financial year, 66 Home Affairs officials were arrested and 18 suspended on allegations of fraud,” he said.

Turning to the engagement of the head of the new Directorate of Priority Crime Investigation, which replaces the Scorpions, he said the appointment will be made after discussion with Justice and Constitutional Minister Enver Surty, “within a month”.

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