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.

  • mmoledis - 2011-12-04 12:47

    The country can not suffer because of one person, if coming of the man in RSA can cause the country economically so I agree with home affairs,issues of the country should come first then the rest last.

      Saksak Motsepe - 2011-12-04 23:38


      Roderick - 2011-12-04 23:59

      5 million Zimbabweans are hurting the economy of South Africa but nobody is stopping them from coming here.

      Donovan - 2011-12-05 02:29

      Principle is just something that happens to other people, isn't it. Think about this in context. Kinda applies, doesn't it: A man is usually more careful of his money than he is of his principles. Ralph Waldo Emerson

      Peter - 2011-12-05 04:03

      @Roderick...that's the most silly thing i have ever heard?..and in fact, since the troubles across the border the SA economy has performed very very well.Just look at the stats and see how trade between the two countries doubled and this is in favor of SA.Also , Zimbabwe has a population of 11 million..therefore your 5 million figure is very doubted..and i would not blame you for such a wild unintelligent numberneering if you cant follow the subject in question.SADC will be adopting a free regional movement policy and if you don't like our system please continue your migration...go to invade the south pole.With your tiny mindedness you might fit in very well with penguins.

      Dirk - 2011-12-05 06:14

      The truth has been revealed- SA bowing to their colonial power, China. And the true culprit? "Dr" courtecy Havana university in Cuba, has discovered/ been advised that she as "minister" of Home Affairs, is ultimately the responsible for visas.

      Peter - 2011-12-05 07:18

      @Roderick..i think its better to educate a fool than to criticize it .So let me try to drill few facts into your thick apartheid mind to save you from your ignorance. 1} Regional migration has been happening between the Southern African countries for time immemorial...way before white settlers 300yrs ago. 2} A quarter of Zimbabweans , that's 3 million of the population have KwaZulu and Venda ancestry...and they come to south africa because its the land of the forefathers and therefore migration is due to cultural and ancestry ties than economical. 3}Just like your forefathers came to Africa to look for green pastures so are {some} Zimbabwean and this is normal for the world which is integrating into one. Europe expanded in the last six years from 17 countries to 27 and this caused high frequency workforce mobility and it worked well for richer states. Asian countries did the same as well freeing labor movement to respond to booming economies.The same can be said to Latin America. 4}Finally , a free border movement in southern Africa will boost economic output across the region...and u cant stop please comment on Dalai Lama instead of blaming it all on Zimbabwe.

      safrikaan - 2011-12-05 10:24

      Glad to see your morality is so cheap. How much would you charge to murder someone?

      baudoux1 - 2011-12-05 11:15

      Maybe the rest of the world should have banned all the ANC exiles during apartheid because they were buying our Apartheid gold..... Seems The ANC is just becoming the NAT party all over again: BEE/AA, Information Bill, this debacle etc. Just different colour so its acceptable!!

  • Bloubul Jonck - 2011-12-05 03:31

    is this because he is not a communist like anc

      Johan - 2011-12-05 10:20

      Welcome to the Southern African Republic of China!

  • Hermann - 2011-12-05 06:21

    And so click the chop sticks.

      Susanna - 2011-12-05 06:42

      to the rhythm of the BRIC clique pick up sticks, call it BRICS

  • franscarel - 2011-12-05 07:10

    when are we going to learn?

  • mmakgaboe - 2011-12-05 07:33

    This really goes both ways. SA sadly needs the relationship with china. We cannot jeopardize that for A SOCIAL VISIT! Yet again it says a lot about our moral values etc ... but how often do morals put food on the table? And by food on the table i mean interpret it in any way. Perhaps the old man just needs to chill and rather Skype his "visits"... he also needs to understand the position we are in. Its bad enough we have our government ... might as well adjust to the fact that the spiritual leader is not allowed. If we fight it, we lose either way.

      wesleywt - 2011-12-05 07:48

      It shows the ANC cares nothing about democracy, human rights or peace. Once they are voted out democratically they will start killing people, just these so called liberators are doing in Zimbabwe. A new struggle against the ANC is on the horizon. South Africans will not roll over as easily as the Zimbabweans.

      Peter - 2011-12-05 12:19

      @wesleyywt....after checks on your profile i have found this: Article Views: 0 .Comments on Articles: 0 ,Articles Posted: 0 ,Photos Posted: 0...yet you have posted many comments inciting an upraise against ANC.So tell me , since south Africans wont role back like Zimbabweans??..Will this be all races against ANC, or its the poor against ANC or its the whites against ANC?...I am very sceptical of any combination which can permute a successful revolution without shooting your own foot. Dont start a fire which will come and consume your own house.Be wise young man!!.

      Hugh - 2011-12-05 13:20

      Farmers put food on the tables, not the Chinese.

  • Colin - 2011-12-05 07:58

    Am I missing something here? I mean the Dalai Lama is a spiritual leader of Budhism. SA is not a predominantly Budhist country. The SA government obviously values their relationship with China above granting a visa. What is all the fuss about. At the end of the day whether he visits or not will mean nothing to most South Africans.

      mmakgaboe - 2011-12-05 08:21

      My point exactly! If our trade relationship is tarnished, he will not necessarily rescue us from the economic crisis we might face. The visits really do not bring us anything ... i wouldn't risk a trade relationship over drinking tea with him. And i don't see how we can overlook that relationship and pretend as if we don't need it. Yes the ANC is clearly letting everyone down with this matter. But even if it was another political party ... i doubt they could "Talk" themselves out of this "mess"

      samphel.dorji - 2011-12-05 13:21

      Communist ideology..... No matter what happen country must run.

      Hugh - 2011-12-05 13:29

      Just a recollection of when the ANC was in exile, it was the west who imposed sanctions,and accomodated/educated the ANC; but the east that sponsored weapons and military revolutionary training. Now these communists are free, they insult the west at every opportunity and proclaim support to other dictators where the citizens are oppressed. China, Cuba, Libya, Syria and the list goes on. SA never traded with China in the past, Taiwan was the eastern preference. Who needs China when we have India? A far better friend and with historic ties. Double standards of a communist regime that runs this country. I hate everything they stand for and represent. May they all rot in hell.

  • Cindy - 2011-12-05 08:06

    Good to know that the SA Govt places Trade above mere trifles like human rights, the rule of Law and democracy

      Peter - 2011-12-05 08:49

      It's that China butters the bread and fills the pockets of the fatcat leaders of the anc. That's why the care.

  • Gollum - 2011-12-05 08:20

    Why does everyone think this guy is so good. He's a hypocrite!

      Gollum - 2011-12-05 22:15

      why all the downvotes? Why does the DL get to say who can buy at what stores, ban others from buying food just because they practice a different brand of bhuddism to him? He does this while preaching tolerance. Why does he get to behave like a pre WW2 Hitler and nobody says jack about it.

  • neufeld.steve - 2011-12-05 08:21

    Absolutely disgusting coming from a government that fought for freedom.

  • Mphotent - 2011-12-05 09:06

    Thank you Peter for slamming this ill-disciplined monger called Roderick, he should go to England if he is not happy with Africans in Africa...sies!

  • Hennie - 2011-12-05 09:08

    The dalai lama is just an unscrupulous politician who uses people like tutu to further his own revolution against the Chinese. I am not saying the Chinese are right. I find any country invading another country and suppressing a culture despicable. I find it as despicable to emotionally manipulate other people to further your own needs. The dalai lama and China are both wrong and our leadership are just to incompetent to handle the whole affair properly.

      Gollum - 2011-12-05 09:30

      Couldn't agree more

  • Mark - 2011-12-05 10:09

    Question: What do South Africans get from China? They've already forced most SA owned clothing factories down (Unemployment), they give us jobs (below minimum wage and no benefits), not to mention an influx of Chinese nationals who either seem to "jump the queue for citizenship, or are illegal. The investment made in SA goes to our government and Chinese citizens.

  • ludlowdj - 2011-12-05 10:13

    The cherry on top of the dictatorship, and the proof from the horses mouth that the ANC government (I refuse to say South African Government as the ANC is most definitely not that) is nothing more than a rent boy to china, and that china is the masters voice. This country is finished.

  • safrikaan - 2011-12-05 10:23

    I hate the ANC, more and more evil day. Theyre so so evil.

  • sean.keys1 - 2011-12-05 14:11

    Regardless of your religious persuasion, the fact remains; China seizure of Tibet should be an act of war, that they have gotten away with this theft amidst a global economy is appalling. South Africans are expected to understand the plight of the oppressed. It is clear the ANC values Chinese money above basic ethics.........

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