Refugees camping in the streets have said they have no idea what will happen to them once the court-ordered verification process comes to an end on Friday. Photographer: Armand Hough/African News Agency(ANA)
Refugees camping in the streets have said they have no idea what will happen to them once the court-ordered verification process comes to an end on Friday. Photographer: Armand Hough/African News Agency(ANA)

Confusion reigns among refugees in Cape Town

By Mwangi Githahu Time of article published Feb 25, 2020

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Cape Town - Refugees camping in the streets around the Central Methodist Mission in Greenmarket Square have said they have no idea what will happen to them once the court-ordered verification process comes to an end on Friday.

One of the spokespeople for the refugees, Crispin Mongwe, said: “We have not heard anything about when the City will effect the by-laws. Also at this point, most of the refugees from inside the church have yet to be verified.

“We have told officials from the Department of Home Affairs that we have nowhere to go. During the verification exercise they asked us questions about when we first came to South Africa, what border we entered by and where we lived before we came to Greenmarket Square."

Some refugees had spoken to social workers and hoped to get accommodation away from the streets but he was not sure if they had been successful.

Another spokesperson for the refugees, Papy Sukami, said: “All we are asking is that after the exercise these people can provide us with a roof over our heads, even if it is just a tent in some field or one of the empty community halls all over the city.”

The City of Cape Town’s executive director for safety and security Richard Bosman said: “We do not have a definitive timeline (for enforcing the by-laws), but the City is committed to resolving the matter as speedily as possible in line with the court order."

Bosman added: "We ask the public to allow the Department of Home Affairs and the City to give effect to the order.”

Refugees camping in the streets have said they have no idea what will happen to them once the court-ordered verification process comes to an end on Friday. Photographer: Armand Hough/African News Agency(ANA)
Refugees camping in the streets have said they have no idea what will happen to them once the court-ordered verification process comes to an end on Friday. Photographer: Armand Hough/African News Agency(ANA)
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Cape Argus

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