Home Affairs Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, has approved the resumption of Identity Document (ID) and passport applications which expired during the lockdown period until 31 December 2021.

Motsoaledi has also extended the validity period of legally issued visas or asylum permits.

ID’S WILL BE AVAILABLE WITHIN 13 DAYS

“People who were issued with Temporary ID Certificates and those who have lost their IDs can now return to Home Affairs offices to apply for their IDs. These IDs will be available for collection within 13 days from the day of application,” he said.

Mostoaledi said the extension applies to people who applied for waivers in terms of section 31(2)(c) of the Immigration Act, 2002 and holders of asylum seeker visas/permits or refugee status.

The extension does not apply to people who entered the country from 15 March 2021. The normal validity period of visas of people admitted into the country from 15 March 2021 applies.

Qualifying visa or permit of holders who have not departed South Africa since the announcement of the National State of Disaster in March 2020, and arrived with a valid visitor’s visa between December 2019 and 14 March 2021, are deemed to be valid until the end of December 2021.

Holders of such visas are permitted to remain in the country under the conditions of their visas until the expiry of their applicable extension.

READ: Home Affairs: Asylum seekers called to renew visas before 30 June

MOTSOALEDI: REPATRIATION AVAILABLE

“Those wishing to be repatriated to their countries within this period can depart without being declared undesirable persons,” said Motsoaledi.

He said Refugee Reception Centres remain closed to walk-ins, however validity of asylum and refugee permits that expired during the lockdown and whose holders could not use the online extension service, has been extended until 31 December 2021.

Asylum seekers and refugees are encouraged to continue renewing their permits via the online platform.

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