Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has issued guidelines in line with the National State of Disaster Regulations to extend the validity period of legally issued visas which expired during the national lockdown.
This means that lawfully issued visas, which expired from 15 February and during the period of the lockdown, are still considered to be valid until the 31st of October 2020.
This means that visa holders can remain in the country under the conditions of their visas until
Those wanting to return to their country of residence within this period can do so without being declared an ‘undesirable person’.
Having said this, however, the refugee reception offices throughout the country remain closed.
VFS offices are open by appointment and only for the collection of outcomes on applications which were made before the lockdown was implemented.
Call for written submissions
Minister Motsoaledi has also invited the public and stakeholders to make written comments on the South African Citizenship Act Draft Amendment Regulations published on 24 July 2020 in the Gazette.
The Draft Regulations relate to Sections 4 (3) and 5 (1) of the South African Citizenship Act. The Amendment Sections were passed by Parliament in 2010 and came into operation on 1 January 2013.
Written submissions can be sent to the Legal Services Division on or before 30 August 2020 to [email protected].
Furthermore, enquiries on the Draft Regulations can be directed to Adv Tsietsi Sebelemetja at (012) 406 4271.
The Directions and Draft Regulations can be accessed via the following links: https://www.gov.za/documents/disaster-management-act-measures-prevent-and-combat-spread-coronavirus-covid-19-home-0