Gigaba: New visa regulations constitutional

2014-05-29 18:22

Pretoria - Controversial new visa regulations for visitors to South Africa are fully constitutional, new Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba said on Thursday.

"We have not only tested it in both the National Assembly and the NCOP [National Council of Provinces] but have consulted senior counsels to ascertain the constitutionality of both the legislation and its regulations," he told reporters in Pretoria.

"If anybody feels that they must challenge the constitutionality of these regulations, they are most welcome to approach the Constitutional Court."

The new immigration regulations introduce a new visa regime for South Africa.

The regulations draw a clear distinction between short-stay visas and long-stay permanent residence permits.

They stipulate that visa applications need to be made by applicants in person, and those wanting to change the status of their visa can no longer do so in South Africa but have to do so at missions abroad.

Several organisations have criticised the amendments to the immigration regulations, which came into effect on Monday.

Global Migration SA said the amendments were unconstitutional and could result in litigation against government.

"These new regulations may trigger a raft of litigation with respect to obvious omissions and constitutional issues," Global Migration SA managing director Leon Isaacson said in a statement.

Earlier this week, the Forum of Immigration Practitioners (FIPSA) said the newly gazetted immigration regulations had an array of shortcomings which would make it impossible to apply for a work visa or any other visa.

  • Alistair Campbell - 2014-05-29 18:39

    The new visa regime is no different to what pertains in other countries. Whoever thinks they have been shortchanged can pursue appropriate avenues.

      Ted Bug - 2014-05-29 18:50

      Tried to get out and failed eh?

      Kosmonooit - 2014-05-29 19:12

      what against a system that is bust already?

      jungleboy - 2014-05-30 01:02

      Rubbish. You obviously haven't read the act or you would know better.

  • Skosana Mafika - 2014-05-29 18:45

    Why dont they challenge US laws,the same people challenging our laws are foreigners who over stayed their visit.

      emilemyburgh - 2014-05-29 19:07

      No you idiot! My Brazilian wife has not overstayed her permit.

  • Joseph van Wyk002 - 2014-05-29 19:07

    And what about the illegal immigrants from zimbabwe and nigeria?

      Oswell Jeranyama - 2014-05-29 19:13

      You can ask the minister if you like but I guess his response will not please you.Good luck!

  • emilemyburgh - 2014-05-29 19:07

    I am married to a Brazilian. According to the new rules, we have to go to brazil every two years to apply for the renewal of her permit. If we don't, my wife will be deported and our family will be split up. In the past the renewal could be done here. Do you think that is constitutional?

      toni.leferinksiljeur - 2014-05-29 19:13

      Renewal can still be done here. But not change of status.

      emilemyburgh - 2014-05-29 19:28

      Really? Where. At VFS?

  • Kosmonooit - 2014-05-29 19:09

    See you in court, and I will be taking civil action against those who put this in place as well. ps nice tie.

      jungleboy - 2014-05-30 01:03

      You have my support.

  • Simba Masikiri - 2014-05-29 19:11

    Love thy neighbour like u love thyself

      Buhlebam Nyuswa - 2014-05-29 19:37


      Memory Dube - 2014-05-29 20:59

      Neighbour fix ur house so tht u dnt beg from ur neighbour

  • Amanda Matthews - 2014-05-29 19:14

    This is going to be quite something. What about those visa holders who own properties and businesses here eh?? I say they must stop living with one foot in S.A. and one abroad. You cannot have your cake and eat it too.

  • Brandon Deep - 2014-05-29 19:15

    What crap.

      Amanda Matthews - 2014-05-29 19:18

      What crap Brandon? They could and should have applied for permanent residence years ago.

      jungleboy - 2014-05-30 01:06

      You can not apply for .PR unless you have been in the country for 5 years!! That is why these new fascist laws are so fu.king preposterous.

  • Johan Kotze - 2014-05-29 19:25

    Wonderful to make it as difficult as possible to allow positive contributing people to come to SA and allow free passage to freeloaders, welfare recipients and criminals. This is Africa at its best.

  • Phil Galpin - 2014-05-29 19:31

    The beauty of these new regulations appear to be that those who follow the rules will be penalised, whilst those who flout them will come into the country with no problems. I am thinking especially of a worthless cheque and a 'wanted' mafia boss.

      Sipho Mbuyazi - 2014-05-29 19:41

      I disagree with you Phil , Companies are suppose to hire people that are permitted to be in the country and if they fail to do that , they must be legally penalized and jailed.

      Phil Galpin - 2014-05-29 19:54

      As I said those who follow the rules etc. Unfortunately SA doesn't train many people with skills and the p*** poor education system doesn't help.Those that do train can't get out quick enough! There is a dearth of skilled people in the world.

  • Sipho Mbuyazi - 2014-05-29 19:37

    Its impossible to make everyone happy , however the proposed law are constitutional and meant to protect our South African children future in employment and to enforce foreign business to hire 60% South Africans than previously where they needed to hire just five South Africans.

  • Amanda Matthews - 2014-05-29 20:03

    And would you believe that some people own houses here and are toing and froing on retirement visas!! Ah the swallows will not be swallowing for very much longer.

      Kosmonooit - 2014-05-29 20:38

      So what? they are bringing money with them, that ultimately means jobs.

      samuelbowker - 2014-05-30 02:15

      In Cap e Town I feel like there are actually too many foreigners, while a bit of cosmopolitan influence is great at a certain point it starts to detract from the local community and culture base. There clearly a lot of advantage being taken, and while it does boost the local economy to some extent we are paying for it in other ways.

  • Progress Knowles - 2014-05-29 20:19

    Am glad with these rules, hopefully it is not late and we have proper processes and procedures to implement these ruled. Am so gatfol of the foreigners (not all of them only the unskilled and crooks) flocking in s.a with no positive contribution other than being a burden on us. Residential areas are dirty because houses are turned into spaza shops, scrap yards and all those funny businesses. What happened to by laws? Lastly, this will assist in prioritising s.a citizens for job opportunities. I say s.a citizens irrespective of race or ethnicity group. Selection process will be based on competency and compliance on emplyment laws of this beautiful country.

      Kosmonooit - 2014-05-29 20:44

      Thing is Progress that's not going to change much, most of those will still slip through porous borders and with the help of corrupt gate keepers - its the legitimate immigrants that this makes life hell for, and seems to actively discourage. Bit like the Metro cops doing road blocks for petty offences in the leafy northern suburbs of Jhb, whilst all hell runs riot down Louis Botha with taxis.

  • Hennie De Bruin - 2014-05-29 20:26

    Typical the whole of Robert Mugabe land is already in SA feeding on our taxpayers so let's change the way Visa laws work so that the economy goes further down the toilet. Anything the ZumaANC touches or changes turns to crap because they've got a I wanna steal from goverment syndrome.

      jungleboy - 2014-05-30 01:22

      They passed this law because they cant do their jobs properly. They passed this law to keep skilled foreign workers out. They passed this law to break up marriages. They passed this law to keep contract workers out. They are the biggest employers of foreign contract workers. This is the way Marxist Lenninist governments operate. Paranoia, propaganda, punishment.

  • Amanda Matthews - 2014-05-29 21:03

    @ Kosmonooit Since when do they bring money back to provide jobs for South Africans. Crap. They only bring money back so that they can live here for another 6 months and then buzz off again. Jeez I wish I could go and do that elsewhere in the world. By the way good luck with your challenge.

      Donald Changwa - 2014-05-30 06:57

      When a foreigner brings Money to survive for that six months they require services, those services are provided through jobs. The Money they spend has been made outside the country meaning this is a positive for the local economy.

  • Moipone Lefatane Mabitsela - 2014-05-29 21:07

    I differ a lot with the Govt's policies but this is the best news. People who are worried are foreigners whose countries have stringent immigration laws what is wrong with our country if they want to fix the wrongs. If you feel wronged go back home. We are tired of the Krecjers of other countries polluting our country we have our OWN. Halala Gigaba.

      jungleboy - 2014-05-30 01:15

      You are correct when it comes to criminals but what about South Africans that have been married to a foreigner for less than five years and are now forced to leave because they will not be given visas?. Should they just divorce their spouse's? What about the children? You really should take the time to read this legislation to understand the misery it's going to cause. This is nothing more than social experimentation by the ANC that will backfire. They will be taken to the constitutional court for human rights violations.....

  • Peter William - 2014-05-29 21:34

    Government make it up as they go along. Discarded you put your X on the paper bye bye. Next time you'll learn ~ or will you?

  • Voster Makhubela - 2014-05-29 21:44

    Coming to the Zimbabweans issue the government had played hide and seek.Why it allowed the program

      Garikayi Mutongoreya - 2014-05-30 09:01

      Because in Zimbabwe there are plenty South Africans by origin who were displaced by Tshaka Zulu during Mfethane. Some went with Soshangane and settled in Eastern Part of Zim. These are now called the Ndau people. A bigger group went with Mzilikazi with the Ndebele people. Some settled in Mpumalanga and Mzilikazi proceeded to KwaBulawayo. You talk of Xhosa's, Tswana, Venda's etc they are all in Zim and observing the same culture.

  • Beryl Green - 2014-05-29 22:53

    Well done South Africa

  • jungleboy - 2014-05-30 01:01

    This is the most horrific, inhumane, shortsighted piece of legislation ever to be passed in our country's history. It is devious, wicked and is an abuse of human rights. I sincerely hope that someone takes up the challenge from this revolting man. The ANC are taking us back to the middle ages.

  • samuelbowker - 2014-05-30 02:06

    We could do with a break from tourism, rental rates in Cape Town have become unthinkable, with unending demand giving way to mass profiteering by landlords. Many properties are owned by foreigners or rental conglomerates. I know visitors are good for the economy but they're starting to become unwelcome guests.

  • Nthako Nthako Motsitsi - 2014-05-30 07:17

    Its very Great. I also belief that most Companies employ the foreigners because of cheap labour. As Minister said, every foreign company that needs to operate inside our country must employ 60% SAn's. I support it because it will reduce unemployment rate.

  • rick.menezes - 2014-05-30 14:14

    I agree with these laws on the principle that there are many African foreign nationals that have used South Africa as a go between before moving to other Western Countries. We have a large amount of young skilled South Africans that need a chance to build a career and currently these positions are taken by foreigners who build up savings and then take money out of South Africa.

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