See More

Dept warns on immigrant workers

Nov 22 2012 17:00

Related Articles

Extra staff at borders for Easter

Skills segregation

SA targets skilled immigrants

How not to attract skills

'Firms to do own checks on foreigners'

MPs pass immigration bill


Johannesburg - The department of home affairs on Thursday warned employers against taking on illegal immigrants.

"It is illegal and against the spirit of our Immigration Act to employ immigrants who are illegal in the country and are without the necessary permits to be in South Africa," home affairs director-general Mkuseli Apleni said in a statement.

The department was reacting to a request by Cosatu and Passop on Tuesday for Home Affairs Minister Naledi Pandor to give immigrant farmworkers in the Western Cape amnesty for the next three months.

"The two parties have reportedly called on minister Pandor to consider extending amnesty for three months to, particularly, workers from Lesotho," Apleni said.

Pandor had not received an official request from the two organisations.

People Against Suffering, Oppression and Poverty (Passop) and the Congress of SA Trade Unions (Cosatu) said the amnesty would avoid serious bloodshed and tensions between different immigrants and South African workers.

Protests about wages and living conditions started in De Doorns at the beginning of November and spread to 15 other towns in the Western Cape.

The protests started with table grape harvesters, who were calling for wages of R150 a day. Most earned between R69 and R75 a day.

"Now is too volatile a time to be implementing the immigration act, and farm owners who have previously employed undocumented workers for years are now dividing workers, using documentation as an excuse," the two organisations said.

Apleni urged employers to ensure their workers were properly registered with the department of labour.

Workers should have the necessary documentation and work permits in line with the country's immigration act.

"We wish to express our concern at reported remarks that may have the consequence of creating a climate conducive for the rise of xenophobic attacks against foreign migrants in the country," Apleni said.

He said the department would continue to address issues of regularisation of illegal migrants in South Africa.

"Following the regularisation of illegal Zimbabwean nationals, the department would consider extending similar services to immigrants from other neighbouring countries," Apleni said.

The department and ministry would decide on the issue once the Zimbabwean documentation project had been completed and finalised.



Lastest Articles

Here is how to check your credit score and manage it Read More...
Top tips to save money over the festive period Read More...
These are the top 5 most fuel efficient cars in SA Read More...
What to consider when switching medical aid schemes

Read Fin24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Company Snapshot

Brought to you by BizNews

More from BizNews

We're talking about:

Small Business

Retailers of any shape and size can now unlock the power of mobile transacting.

Money Clinic

Money Clinic
Do you have a question about your finances? We'll get an expert opinion.
Click here...