Home Affairs ready to facilitate movement of Afcon fans

Friday, November 16, 2012
Nthambeleni Gabara

Pretoria - The Department of Home Affairs is preparing to facilitate the movement of the 15 national football teams and their fans who will be flocking to South Africa for the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) tournament in January next year.

Home Affairs Director-General Mkuseli Apleni said in Pretoria on Thursday plans were afoot to ensure the efficient, secure and effective of movement of the members of the football fraternity into the country.

"As part of government's commitment to ensuring the successful hosting of the tournament, the Department of Home Affairs is preparing to facilitate the movement of a large number of national teams, Confederations of African Football (CAF) officials, affiliates, media and soccer fans," he said.

Apleni said the department would create dedicated queue lanes with clear directional signage at identified ports of entry such as the OR Tambo and King Shaka International airports, as well as in other land ports of entry.

He said the Advanced Passenger Processing (AAP) and Movement Control Systems (MCS) would be enforced - a legacy of the 2010 FIFA World Cup - to ensure smooth movement of travellers in and out of the country.

The AAP and MCS are linked to SARS, the Reserve Bank and law enforcement agencies and they enable the department to facilitate the movement of persons in and outside the country, monitor those who overstay their welcome while helping to curb crime and corruption.

The APP assists in checking passengers against a prohibited list of passengers before boarding planes at their respective foreign countries.

The department would also build on the infrastructure that was developed for processing of entry into and out of the country during the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

"We will also assist with the issuance of work permits for CAF delegates, commercial affiliates and members of the media. As a department, we are on course to helping South Africa host a successful Afcon 2013 utilising the experience acquired during the 2010 FIFA World Cup," said Apleni.

Afcon 2013 will kick off on January 19, with an opening match between Bafana Bafana and Cape Verde at Soccer City Stadium in Johannesburg.

The African champions will be crowned on February 10 at the same venue. - SAnews.gov.za 

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