Just privatise Home Affairs

I WISH to express my anger and sadness about the young man, Skhumbuzo Mhlongo, who was forced to commit suicide while his entire future lay ahead of him

I WISH to express my anger and sadness about the young man, Skhumbuzo Mhlongo, who was forced to commit suicide while his entire future lay ahead of him

And all this because he was let down by the Home Affairs Department.

Initiatives have come and gone, as have directors and ministers trying and improve Home Affairs. None of them have worked.

Instead we read more horrifying stories about the department: people who are very much alive are registered as dead; our sisters are married off without their knowledge to foreigners who seek citizenship.

If I were to carry on, I would run out of ink.

I ask the honourable Minister of Home Affairs, let's privatise the department.

Workable options to do this can be considered.

For instance, the City of Johannesburg has contracted companies to issue traffic fines to speeding motorists. It's not as if they control the metro police, but they assist in deploying more patrol cars on the streets to fight crime instead of hiding behind bushes looking out for speeding motorists.

If a private company could run Home Affairs with information technology, assist with ID applicants and issue IDs, and also assist in other crucial areas, we will have a better Home Affairs Department.

To ensure that any company contracted to Homes Affairs delivers, a performance agreement that involves service level and turnaround times must be put in place. Should they fail, Home Affairs should be able to find another company that is more willing and able to do the job.

I am sure that if we all buy into this idea, more opportunities to improve the Home Affairs department will present themselves.

Thabiso Phinda, Newtown

X