Home Affairs minister Aaron Motsoaledi has outlined which services are now available at offices across the country under lockdown level 2 regulations – including limited services at satellite offices at South African banks.
The changes have already been largely laid out in gazetted regulations published this week; however the minister did clarify some points that have received many queries.
One of the biggest services to return is the application for ID documents.
Mostoaledi noted that this is not for general population, but for first-time applicants for ID documents, including matriculants and those celebrating their 16th birthday, who can come to the Home Affairs offices and apply for the relevant documents.
Others who can apply for ID cards are those whose temporary IDs issued during lockdown have expired.
Between 27 March and 21 Aug 2020, the department issued more than 347,787 temporary ID documents, out of these, 65,129 have expired – these holders are now eligible to apply for smart ID cards, he said.
The directive also states that all temporary identity certificates issued during the period of the national state of disaster that have not yet expired, have been extended up to 31 October 2020.
Other services now allowed include applications for amendments or rectifications of data. On average, 4,000 people visit the offices for rectifications or amendments, Motsoaledi said.
Under the new gazetted regulations, the following additional services will be available at Home Affairs offices during the level 2 lockdown:
- Applications for first issue of Identity Card or Green Barcoded Identity Documents;
- Applications for Identity Cards or Green Barcoded Identity Documents by persons who have been issued with a Temporary Identity Certificate during the national state of disaster, which certificates have expired;
- Applications for amendments of personal particulars;
- Applications for rectification of personal particulars;
- Back Office records retrieval services.
South Africans abroad that need to return to the country can apply for emergency passports, Motsoaledi said.
The minister said that his office has been swamped with calls from people whose passports have expired, asking for them to be extended in the same way IDs and other documents have.
“There has been an expectation that these could be extended. I want to be clear: the rules around passports are not those of Home Affairs, they are part of the International Civil Aviation Authority. Passports cannot be extended,” he said.
Passports are issued once, he said. If they are expired, lost or stolen, you need to get a new one. The remedy for this is, if you are stuck overseas, you are given a temporary one-way passport to allow you to re-enter South Africa.
Home Affairs at banks
Another change under lockdown level 2 is that banks have opened for collections of IDs and passports.
These collections are only for documents that were applied for and processed before lockdown (before 26 March 2020).
Motsoaledi stressed that this is only for collections, not for applications or any other services.
This service will be available on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays only, during bank hours.
These are the bank branches that will be open for Home Affairs collections:
- Absa Greenacres, Port Elizabeth
- Absa Sandton City
- Absa Towers in Johannesburg
- Absa Lifestyle, Centurion
- FNB Lifestyle, Centurion
- FNB Menlyn, Pretoria
- FNB Merchant, Sandton
- FNB Portside, Cape Town
- Investec Bank, Sandton
- Nedbank Arcadia, Pretoria
- Nedbank Constantia Kloof, Roodepoort
- Nedbank Rivionia
- Nedbank Nelspruit
- Nedbank St George’s Mall, Cape Town
- Standard Bank Simon’s Street, Johannesburg
- Standard Bank Canal Walk, Cape Town
- Standard Bank Killarney Mall, Johannesburg
- Standard Bank Lifestyle, Centurion
- Standard Bank Kingsmead, Durban
- Standard Bank Jubilee Mall, Hammanskraal