Structured approach to effectively manage migration

Friday, June 26, 2009

Parliament - The Department of Home Affairs is considering setting up a structured approach to effectively manage migration across the country's 72 ports of entry.

Delivering her Budget Vote on Friday, Home Affairs Minister, Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma said her department's priority will be to ensure the integrity of the state, while at the same time contributing to the socio-economic and cultural development of society.

"Managing migration effectively, securely and humanely is of vital national importance. In a globalised world we cannot grow the economy without securing scarce skills available internationally.

"To this end, we intend to adopt a deliberate and structured approach and will accordingly be seeking to streamline some of our regulations," she said.

She further told the House that her department also had a responsibility to receive those who seek asylum from one form of persecution or another, as defined by international conventions.

"We must recognise that they have the ability to contribute to the expansion of our knowledge base and certainly to enrich our cultural diversity.

"We have to ensure that asylum seekers are assisted and their status is determined timeously," she said.

Dr Dlamini-Zuma also announced that her department is currently reviewing the structure, size and functions of the Refugee Appeals Board.

According to her, the current status constitutes a significant bottleneck in the asylum seeker processing chain.

"As a country, government and parliament we have to develop policy that will differentiate economic migrants from asylum seekers, this will allow us to discharge our obligations towards both the asylum seekers and economic migrants properly," she said.