It's Twar: Gigaba gives Redi Tlhabi deadline to apologise or face 'hefty damages claim'

Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba has urged a media personality to apologise after an ongoing Twitter war ensued following the announcement of the latest amendments to travel rules for minors.

Gigaba announced on Tuesday that documentation proving parental consent for a minor to travel is no longer a requirement. 

Read: Travel rules relaxed for foreign parents travelling with children

The announcement led to a series of tweets by Redi Tlhabi, in which she accuses Gigaba of implementing policies "without empirical evidence", claiming the decision was one driven by Gigaba's "ego".

Tlhabi also alleged that Gigaba had had a personal issue with his ex-wife about a trip involving his daughter, and accused him of formulating the new regulations to suit his personal life.

Gigaba, in a few tweets, responded to Tlhabi and gave her until 17:00 to "withdraw and apologise for her malicious lies" or "start raising money for a hefty damages claim".

READ: 5 things you need to know in SA business today and the showdown between Redi Tlhabi and Malusi Gigaba

Tlhabi has since responded to the tweet, with no indication of withdrawing her claims.

The former finance minister also announced a passport for minors that will eventually see the end of unabridged birth certificates as the document will have the contact details of both parents. 

Traveller24 previously reported that according to Gigaba, the Department of Home Affairs will not go back on a decision to implement previous visa requirements, which required all parents entering South Africa to provide an unabridged birth certificate of all travelling children, detailing the child's father and mother. 

READ SA visa changes: We will not contribute to child trafficking and required travel consent remains for SA children

These requirements came into effect on June 1, 2015, and applied even when both parents are travelling with their children.

Read more: Gigaba: Home Affairs will not go back on visa rules for children

The recent amendments follow the announcement by President Cyril Ramaphosa last week on changes to the visa regime as part of the economic stimulus and recovery plan. 

Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs Hlomani Chauke has welcomed the broad visa-related reforms, which are set to be implemented before the festive season. 

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