South Africa will tighten its immigration policy even if it is perceived as anti-African, Home Affairs Minister, Hlengiwe Mkhize, has told the Johannesburg-based Mail & Guardian publication.
Ms Mkhize said the government could no longer be lenient, when it faced the “real challenge” of locals’ hostility towards immigrants.
In the Mail & Guardian interview, she also said South Africa was socially unstable to implement the African Union’s 2063 initiative which calls for visa-free travel for Africans on the continent by 2018:
Remember our triple challenge [unemployment, poverty and inequality] is real and we know from other parts of the world that that’s what triggers a revolution.
People will revolt against the government of the day if they feel they’re in competition with everybody.”
She said border controls needed to improved:
Virtually everywhere you find people with no legal documents, all over. That talks to weaknesses in our border ports.
Ms Mkhize also said there was a corrupt syndicate in her department facilitating sham marriages:
People get involved in unlawful marriages, where there are women who will agree to assist a person by marrying them …it’s almost like it’s systematic, something which has got roots now in each and every corner.
When you ask, ‘But how did it happen? Where was the priest?’ They have priests who collude; they have police who collude and some of our officials who collude, and citizens who also collude.”