HOME AFFAIRS slammed

A prominent South African immigration lawyer has criticised "corruption and incompetence" at the Home Affairs department.

A prominent South African immigration lawyer has criticised "corruption and incompetence" at the Home Affairs department.

"Corruption is sinking the country in international eyes," said chairman of the immigration and nationality committee of the International Bar Association, Gary Eisenberg.

He was responding yesterday to a decision by the United Kingdom to impose visa restrictions on South African passport holders.

Plans to upgrade Home Affairs' IT systems and modernise immigration and customs services were welcome improvements.

The United Kingdom announced on February 9 that South African passport holders would in future need visas to travel there. This was due to non-South Africans having been able to get legitimate South African passports fraudulently with relative ease.

Eisenberg recommended a "zero tolerance" policy towards corrupt Home Affairs officials, more cooperation between Home Affairs and the police and the establishment of immigration courts. - Sapa

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