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By Citizen Reporter

Journalist


Home affairs scraps unabridged birth certificate requirement

One of the main requirements states that where a parent is unable to consent to the child's travel, persons acting on behalf of the child may apply for a special dispensation.


Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has signed a waiver which allows foreign children to enter the country without carrying additional supporting documents.

This means the unpopular policy of requiring international minors travelling to South Africa with their parents to present unabridged birth certificates has been scrapped.

The policy was considered to be bad for tourism, and Tourism Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane has welcomed its scrapping, saying in a statement it has come at a good time, “ahead of the festive season”.

The department announced the revised requirements for children travelling through the South African ports of entry.

“This improvements in our admissions policy builds on the work the department has been doing to contribute to economic growth and investment,” said Motsoaledi.

One of the main requirements, previously published in April and revised this month, states that where a parent recorded in a birth certificate or equivalent document is unable to consent to the travel by a child due to recent death or mental or physical disability, persons acting on behalf of the child may apply for a special dispensation by directing a request and full motivation with all supporting documents to the office of the director-general of home affairs (consent@dha.gov.za).

A South African child travelling with both their parents must have a valid passport and copy of a birth certificate or equivalent document or passport containing the details of the parents of the child.

A non-South African child travelling with both their parents will only require a valid passport.

These were the requirements published by home affairs:

Source: Department of home affairs

  • South African children travelling on South African passports may travel to South Africa without birth certificates.
  • Supporting documents are not required where children are in direct transit at an international airport.
  • Children in possession of valid South African visas are not required to produce the documents already submitted as part of their visa applications when travelling through a port of entry of the Republic.
  • A child presenting a passport which contains the details of their parent or parents is not required to produce a birth certificate/equivalent document.

Read full requirements on the home affairs department website.

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