The City received the Department of Home Affair’s official response to our demand for them to develop a plan to address the rising illegal immigration challenges faced by the City.
City of Johanneburg Executive Mayor Cllr Herman Mashaba said, “Recognising these challenges, the Department has proposed the establishment of a joint committee between the Department and the City. This joint committee will be tasked with developing a plan to address illegal immigration within the City of Johannesburg.”
“In the best interest of our residents and in the interest of good cooperative governance, the City has accepted the Department’s proposal,” said Mashaba as he expressed gratitude.
This City will now engage with the Department to agree on terms of reference for the joint committee and times frames for completion of the committee’s work.
Once the joint committee has finalised its work, I will meet with the Minister of Home Affairs, Ms. Ayanda Dlodlo, to consider and approve the plan.
“I am happy to see that Minister Dlodlo is taking these immigration challenges seriously, unlike her two predecessors. For over a year, I have on numerous occasions sought an audience with the Department of Home Affairs, in good faith – sadly those attempts were in vain,” added Mashaba.
Many people from across the continent and world seek a better life in South Africa, and the City of Johannesburg in particular.
Those who are undocumented immigrants, are then forced to live on the fringes of our society with limited protection afforded to them.
From the City’s perspective, illegal immigration compounds serious challenges for the provision of temporary emergency accommodation for residents and other basic services.
It is therefore crucial that a comprehensive plan be developed which will finally start addressing these pressing concerns.
This new joint committee can thus not be allowed to degenerate into another intergovernmental talk shop with few results.
“As the custodian on immigration matters, I hope that the Department will show leadership in this matter.
“Hopefully, the newfound commitment shown by the Department will bear an effective and lasting solution which will protect the best interests of our citizens and law abiding foreign nationals in our City,” concluded Mashaba.