LETTER: Passport to nowhere
An encounter with the department of home affairs
After the recent relaxation of travel restrictions, we have made appointments to visit our customers in Europe. I wasn’t born in SA and am therefore unable to apply for my replacement SA passport online and complete the application at my bank.
I arrived at home affairs in Randburg on Monday at 2pm, but owing to the long queue no more applicants could be accepted on the premises. According to the gatekeeper, passport applicants can expect to queue for six hours or more.
I called the home affairs contact centre number listed on its website and received the message that “the network is congested”. I tried another Pretoria number on the same website and got the message that “the number you have dialled does not exist”.
The SA government has been quick to blame other countries, specifically the UK, for being on their “red list” for travel. However, after my encounter (actually, no encounter whatsoever) with the department of home affairs, perhaps a little introspection wouldn’t go amiss.
Andrew Armstrong, Via email
JOIN THE DISCUSSION: Send us an email with your comments. Letters of more than 300 words will be edited for length. Send your letter by email to email@example.com. Anonymous correspondence will not be published. Writers should include a daytime telephone number.
Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments?
Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.
Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.