No ID card - and no vote - for irate SA man

Department of Home Affairs spokesperson Mayihlome Tshwete.

Department of Home Affairs spokesperson Mayihlome Tshwete.

Published Aug 2, 2016


Johannesburg - While most of the country gets ready to cast their vote in the municipal elections on Wednesday, one man will only be able to watch from a distance.

In June, The Star reported that Joseph Khoza's ID has been blocked on and off since 1988 because of a Department of Home Affairs mix-up, which repeatedly alleges that he is an illegal immigrant from Mozambique.

But Khoza is South African, born in this country to a South African mother and a Mozambican father.

Department spokesman Mayihlome Tshwete had said Khoza's details had to be corroborated against the Home Affairs National Identification System (Hanis) to verify his identity. He had added that the confusion had been cleared up and that he should apply again.

But, two months later, the irate Kempton Park man is no closer to getting his ID.

“I am disappointed with Mr Tshwete. He said I need to apply for a smart card and it will be issued in two weeks. I did apply, on June 3, and it was declined,” Khoza said.

“I went for a second time on July 4 and was advised to apply for a green ID book.”

When approached for comment on Khoza's latest stumbling block, Tshwete indicated that the “illegal immigrant” block marker was permanently lifted on June 1.

He added: “A Smart ID card could not be issued at that time due to the cancellation of the original application during the course of the investigation, and the fact that Mr Khoza's fingerprints were not yet recorded on the Hanis. The matter has been finalised and arrangements are being made directly with the client to be assisted without any further delay, which will enable him to submit a new application for a smart ID card.”

But Khoza dismissed the department's explanation. “If I give them my fingerprints again, it will be the fourth time. If they come back and talk about fingerprint verification I get annoyed because this has been happening for many years.”

Khoza said no one from the department had contacted him as Tshwete had indicated would happen.

He was considering taking legal action against the department for the significant losses he suffered over the years.

The 47-year-old has been wrongfully arrested many times, has lost an international job, can't access his money from a bank and couldn't register his daughter in school.

“I am not going to vote now because of their inefficiency. I want my ID issued so that I can carry on with my life like any other South African citizen.”

The Star


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