Home Affairs approves essential travel for South Africans to other countries

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Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has allowed essential travel for South Africans who want to return to the countries where they are based.

In a statement on Saturday, the Department of Home Affairs said it would allow South Africans to leave the country for work, study, family reunions, to take up permanent residency or to receive medical attention.

The decision was made after consultation with the Department of International Relations and Cooperation as well as the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC), the department added.

"South Africa, like many countries in the world, has implemented travel restrictions as part of the measures put in place to fight the spread of Covid-19. Travel between countries is allowed in special circumstances."

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Those who wish to return to countries they reside in will need a valid copy of their South African passport.

They would also need a letter confirming their admissibility under the circumstances from the embassy or other diplomatic representatives of the country they want to travel to.

"If returning by road or connecting via flights, the proof submitted needs to include permission from each transiting country," the department said.

This means proof of travel such as an air or bus ticket and the intended date of departure.

ALSO READ | Some South Africans repatriated from Wuhan now want to go back

"South Africans who fall in these categories and satisfy the criteria can send an email to Covid19travel@dha.gov.za.

"An email will be sent to travellers who meet the criteria to enable them to proceed with their travel arrangements," it added.

For people traveling in groups, only one email with supporting documents of each member is needed.

Members of the public can call 0800 60 11 90 for enquiries.

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