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Refugee Appeals Authority of South Africa Rules Amended

November 25, 2020

Department of Home Affairs

The Refugee Appeals Authority of South Africa Rules have been amended.

The home affairs department published the amended Rules in Government Gazette 43913.

The amended Rules aim to provide for an appeal process that is fair, efficient, with integrity and adaptable.

Reference to Refugee Appeals Authority of South Africa is inserted into Rule 1.

The Registrar is described as an official designated as such by the Chairperson of the Refugee Appeals Authority of South Africa.

An amendment to Rule 4 on lodging an appeal stipulates that appeals must be lodged within 10 days and “such appeal may be lodged in person with the Refugee Appeals Authority of South Africa or at the Refugee Reception Office where the letter of rejection was issued by the Refugee Status Determination Officer or by email to an email address designated by the Refugee Appeals Authority of South Africa for that purpose in the practice note”.

The amendments also point out that the Refugee Appeals Authority of South Africa may, where good cause is shown, condone non-compliance with the 10-day period.

In Rule 8 on change in address, the appellant must notify the Registrar of the Refugee Appeals Authority of any change in his or her address or personal contact details provided in the Notice of Appeal within 30 days of knowing such change.

Amendments are also introduced to Rule 11 on postponement of a hearing, Rule 12 on non-appearance of appellant, Rule 14 on [Closed] Confidential Proceedings, Rule 15 on Subpoena of Witnesses, Rule 16 on Consolidated Proceedings and Rule 19 on review of decisions.

A new Rule 13A on determination on paper is also inserted.

It stipulates that a member may determine a matter on paper provided there is sufficient information on the file to make a determination.

“Prior to making a final determination on paper the appellant will be afforded an opportunity to submit an affidavit explaining whether he/she objects to a determination on paper and provide reasons for such objection. In the affidavit the appellant may include additional information for a member’s consideration.”

The amended Rules came into effect on the date of publication.