The planned immigration legal reforms by Home Affairs Minister, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, as presented in the recently published White Paper on Citizenship, Immigration and Refugee Protection, are nothing more than an attempt to place a Band-Aid on a bullet wound as it does not resolve the key constraints to South Africa’s immigration regime.
As a party which values the rule of law, ActionSA has repeatedly asserted that the problem with South Africa’s immigration regime does not lie with the country’s laws, but with the application of those laws by state agencies and the failure to secure our borders.
It is the dysfunctional state of the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) and our border management agencies which have led to the current dire situation, and legal reforms will therefore unlikely address the issue unless coupled with vast institutional improvements, notably to the DHA, and the strengthening of our porous borders.
ActionSA will provide input into the white paper before the January deadline, in line with the various policies adopted at our inaugural policy conference in September 2023. At the policy conference delegates voted that when we enter government, vast reforms at the DHA should be undertaken to streamline the process of obtaining visas and work permits for those wishing to enter South Africa legally, while clamping down on corruption and the issuing of fraudulent documentation.
Skilled professionals and investors who are able to contribute to our economy and create jobs, thereby improving the lives of our people, should also be encouraged and incentivised to come to South Africa.
ActionSA believes that South Africa is a country built on the backs of migrants from across the world, and immigrants should therefore be welcomed. But, when immigrants come to South Africa they should do so legally and adhere to our laws.