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South Africa: Parliament Seeks to Ban Cellphone use by Home Affairs Frontline Staff

Source: SABC, 14/01/2019

Committee Chairperson Hlomani Chauke says the committee will ask the Minister to urgently come up with new regulations to implement the banning of cell-phone usage during working hours. “It is unacceptable that the public spend excessive amounts of time at Home Affairs offices, while officials spend a disproportionate amount of time busy with their cell phones. Officials are primarily employed to offer a service and the complaints point to dereliction of duty by some officials, yet they continue to draw a salary at the end of the month,” Chauke said. Chauke says they have received numerous complaints from members of the public. He says an oversight visit has also revealed that the problem is found at various critical home affairs offices and at ports of entry. “We have observed that it has happened many times in the ports of entry, at the airport, we always find that the behaviour of the officials is really unbecoming and therefore we are making a call as Parliament from the Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs, that the Minister urgently consider regulations that bans the use of or handling of cellphones during working hours in particular at the front line of the Department of Home Affairs, same applies with this things of visas and permits. Those offices are very critical , ` that’s where you interact with members of the public directly and we believe again that these things (cell-phones) are used, ` operating with syndicates from outside the Department of Home Affairs.”


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