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Reprieve for international students as Home Affairs extends study visas

Source: Times Live, 08/11/2016

Reprieve for international students as Home Affairs extends study visas given a reprieve by the Department of Home Affairs and will not be declared undesirable persons following a blanket extension of their study visas to March 31‚ 2017. The extension applies to all international students in possession of such documents and who are registered in the country`s tertiary institutions. "The extension applies to all study visas with an expiry date of‚ or prior to‚ December 31 2016‚ and it is on condition that the date of departure from South Africa is not later than 31 March 2017‚" department spokesman Thabo Mokgola said. "The requirements prescribed in Regulation 27(a) and (c) of the Immigration Regulations are also waived so that the affected students are not declared undesirable persons when departing from the republic after the expiry of their temporary residence visas. Those students will therefore not be deemed to have overstayed.

Officials at ports of entry will be informed accordingly‚" said Mokgola. Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba said his department had to intervene in the interest of students‚ "mindful of the situation in tertiary institutions and the imperative for all students to complete their academic year." Gigaba had received representations from tertiary institutions and stakeholders on the matter. - TMG Digital/BusinessLIVE


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