Monday, June 01, 2015

Home Affairs to implement child travelling law

Mbasa Gqokoma

01 June 2015

The portfolio Committee on Home Affairs notes the commencement of the new immigration regulations requirements for travelling with children.

Committee Chairperson Leminas Mashile says, the committee remains cognisant of the teething challenges that might arise due to the implementation of these new regulations especially to the tourism industry.

Furthermore, the committee urges the department to improve its communications with key stakeholders especially within the tourism industry to ensure these rules are adhered to and properly understood.

Mashile remains of the view that the security of children, whether South African of foreign, must be guaranteed at all times.

Mashile said as the portfolio committee we take note that today, it marks the start of the implementation of the new immigration regulation which mainly talks to travelling with children under 18-years.

“We know that for every change in policy of course there will be some sort of effect and impact which may be negative or positive. We really want to wish the department of Home Affairs success in the implementation of these regulations and no child trafficking under our eyes happens in South Africa”, Mashile added.

Meanwhile, Western Cape MEC for Economic Opportunities, Alan Winde, said with the new visa regulations, the South African tourism sector is bracing itself to disaster.

Winde said, the most worrying aspect of this process is the consultation. Spokesperson to MEC Winde Bronwynne Jooste said, Home Affairs seems determined to forge ahead with implementing these regulations, despite pleas from the private sector.

Jooste said Minister Winder is much concerned about the lack of consultation by implementing these new visa laws.

“The Red Tape Reduction Unit has looked at the sets of proposals to minimise the effect on the tourism factor that includes the recommendations of E-Visa’s as well as ensuring the department of Home Affairs has the capacity, and its staff understands the regulation so that there is no room for misinterpretation”, Jooste added.



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