Cape Town – The Easter period is here and an increase in travellers moving across SA’s ports of entry is expected.
While corruption at ports of entry is a key challenge for South Africa’s department of home affairs, the department says it is ready for a smooth peak period following a “seamless 2017/18 Festive Season Operation”, as “most security challenges were swiftly attended to”.
Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba says the DHA will extend operational hours at ports of entry to cater for the upsurge in traveller movements during the peak season.
The extension of operational hours at ports of entry commenced on 27th of March and will run until 06th of April 2018 - as detailed in the table below.
The DHA also released historical data showing not only the movements of travellers over the past four years, but also the key incidents dealt with over the 2017/18 Festive Season.
While domestic arrivals and departures spiked by 7% for 2017, when compared to the Easter Period for 2016, International Traveller arrivals for the same period decreased by an estimated 3%.
“Before the 2016/17 festive period, South Africa had beefed-up security by rolling out biometrics at selected ports and is continuing. This is a milestone in managing immigration for development while guaranteeing safety and security of citizens and clients,” says Gigaba.
As part of the planned Border Management Authority, Gigaba attributed the success during the previous period due to an integrated effort between a number of government departments and entities.
Officials from the Local Municipal and National Traffic form part of the ports operations and play a vital role in ensuring that traffic leading to the major ports of entry does not congest the entrance and exit gates of the ports and all road users adhere to traffic regulations. The 2017/18 festive season operation was executed successfully and proficiently, thus allowing for a sound base for preparing for the next operation – Easter 2018.
During peak holidays, such as Easter and the end of the year, a number of security risks and dynamics are at play says the DHA - these include: