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Motsoaledi Shines Light on Home Affairs Priority Services During Alert Level 3

January 14, 2021

Department of Home Affairs

People who don’t fall into the exemption categories for cross-border travel can apply to the home affairs minister for exemption.

The homes affairs minister, Aaron Motsoaledi, announced this in a statement on home affairs priority services to be offered during Coronavirus COVID-19 adjusted alert level 3 lockdown.

Earlier this week, the 20 land borders that were open during level 1 were closed.

However, movement in and out of the country was still allowed for the transportation of fuel, cargo and goods; emergency medical attention for a life-threatening condition; the return of South African nationals, permanent residents or persons with other valid visas; diplomats; the departure of foreign nationals and daily commuters from neighbouring countries who attend school in South Africa.

The minister pointed out that people that don’t fall into the listed categories but believe that their case is worth considering, must apply seven working days prior to date of intended travel for exemption.

The minister also confirmed that people allowed into South Africa are still subject to the prescribed screening procedures and isolation or quarantine rules, as the case may be, including provision of a valid certificate of a negative COVID-19 test obtained not more than 72 hours before the date of travel and, in cases where no certificate is provided, antigen tests at own cost and quarantine at own cost if tests return positive results.

According to the minister, certain services will be suspended until further notice in the face of rising demand for death certificates:

• Applications of Smart ID Cards, except for matriculants;
• Applications for passports, except for people who fall in the categories permitted to travel in the amended Disaster Management Act Regulations;
• Marriage services such as solemnisation and registration.

The department is also proposing that all births and deaths be registered at the health facilities where they occur and which have home affairs office presence.

The minister also indicated that operating hours will be extended to 19H00 until 15 February 2021 to accommodate people who need to register deaths and births.