Upcoming deportations of undocumented Lesotho nationals ‘nothing like Trump’
Roxanne Henderson | 2017-01-30 07:11:04.0
Minister of Home Affairs Malusi Gigaba. File photo.
Image by: LAUREN MULLIGAN
South Africa will soon begin deporting undocumented Lesotho nationals – but will not mimic US President Donald Trump’s attitude towards migrants from neighbouring Mexico in doing so.
This was announced by the Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba yesterday. He was giving an update on the Lesotho Special Permit application process, which closed last month. Some applications were incomplete and they were given extra time to submit outstanding documents.
The special permits were introduced to regularise the stay of Basotho people in the country for work, study or business.
Basotho in South Africa unlawfully were protected during the application process, but this comes to an end on March 31, the deadline to submit outstanding documents to the Department of Home Affairs.
Deportations of those who failed to apply for special permits would begin from April, Gigaba said.
He said, however, that the department was not seeking the “Trump solution” for dealing with any people in the country illegally.
“The Trump approach, we will never support it.”
The minister said the government ultimately wanted to accommodate free movement for the citizens of all African countries, but that goal needed “to be managed gradually”.