News Articles

Family`s visa horror

Source: Mail & Guardian, 08/08/2015

SA`S NEW travel rules prevented our minor children from attending a family funeral. My wife and children were on holiday in Florence, Italy, and I had returned early to our home in Singapore when we received the tragic news that our three-year-old niece had passed away. We wanted to return to SA immediately, in time for the funeral last Friday. The problem: for my children to fly directly from Europe to SA with my wife, they needed their birth certificates, a (certified?) copy of my passport and an affidavit (signed by me in the presence of my wife) granting permission for them to travel without me. I could think of no way to get this done in time. Some government websites that set out the confusing list of requirements (and frankly I`m still not sure I understand them correctly), state that you can contact your local High Commission, embassy or the Department of Home Affairs. Good luck. At 5.03pm local time on Tuesday last week (regular hours end at 5pm), I called the main number for the South African High Commission in Singapore. There was no reply after several attempts. I then called the "after hours emergency number", and there was also no reply after several attempts. I went to the High Commission in London`s website and found a phone number on the home page. An automated recording from a British telephone company told me the number did not exist, and I dialled several times. I found another number and failed to get any answer after more than a dozen attempts during normal working hours. I then called the Department of Home Affairs headquarters in Pretoria. Again, no one answered during several attempts. We gave up on taking our children with us to SA for the funeral, left them in the care of friends in England, and made our separate ways to Durban without them. Need I say more? Have we enjoyed all our rights as citizens? Reinie Booysen Singapore


Search

  •    THE media and the public will now be allowed to attend asylum seekers` appeals when conducted following the adoption of the Refugee Amendment Bill.... Read more...
  •    Deputy Home Affairs Minister Fatima Chohan explains the automated booking system and the process followed by asylum seekers.... Read more...
  •    A case against the Department of Home Affairs was launched for not complying with orders of the court to open the Refugee Reception Office in Cape Town. A new one is set to be opened.... Read more...
  •    THE media and the public will now be allowed to attend asylum seekers` appeals when conducted following the adoption of the Refugee Amendment Bill.... Read more...
  •    Cape Town - A Western Cape Cape High Court judge is facing a legal conundrum after three illegal immigrants arrested during a national clampdown Operation Fiela turned to the courts to test the lawfulness of their detention... Read more...
  •    Banks are lending more than money these days. As banks and financial institutions all over the world continue to expand their digital footprint by aggressively marketing for new customers, keeping pace with regulatory compliance and implementing new technology services to better serve is current customer base, they are lending more risk to their customers than ever before.... Read more...
  •    The surface web plays an integral role in the selling of personal information, a report on identify fraud has revealed... Read more...
  •    Affairs (HA) is probably the most dysfunctional government department in the country: just ask the Hodges, the Hansells and the Waltons.... Read more...
  •    FLAWS: ANC treasurer-general Zweli Mkhize says elitist business models and a sluggish economy are limiting jobs.... Read more...
  •    The surface web plays an integral role in the selling of personal information, a report on identify fraud has revealed... Read more...

Get the latest Immigration News