South Africa: Joseph Emmanuel José and Jonathan Diabaka “Junior” vs. Minister of Home Affairs and others

Published: 15/Mar/2019
Source: High Court of South Africa (Gauteng Division)

Case No.38981/17  [2019] ZAGPPHC 88

Judgment ordering grant of citizenship to the applicants (children of Angolan refugees born in South Africa) under s.4(3) of the South African Citizenship Act.


1          This is an application for an order requiring the respondents to grant the applicants citizenship in terms of section 4(3) of the South African Citizenship Act 88 of 1995 (« the Citizenship Act »).

2           The applicants are brothers, who were born in South Africa. Their parents are Angolan refugees who sought asylum in South Africa, are not South African citizens and are not, and did not enter South Africa for, permanent residence. Both applicants have lived in the Republic from the time they were born until they attained majority. They have no links to Angola and consider South Africa their home. This much is common cause.

3          The Citizenship Act provides in section 4(3) that

A child born in the Republic of parents who are not South African citizens or who have not been admitted into the Republic for permanent residence, qualifies to apply for South African citizenship upon becoming a major if-

(a)     he or she has lived in the Republic from the date of his or her birth to the date of becoming a major; and

(b)     his or her birth has been registered in accordance with the provisions of the Births and Deaths Registration Act, 1992.

4          The applicants applied for South African citizenship in terms of the section, by affidavit, no forms having been promulgated for the purpose, and the respondent’s officials not having responded to queries as to the correct manner in which to apply. The first applicant submitted his application on 25 August 2016 and the second applicant on 24 October 2016.

5          No substantive response was given by the respondents to the applicants’ submissions and queries. On 17 March 2017 the respondents’ attorneys placed the respondents on terms, and the application was instituted on 7 June 2017.

Download judgment from SAFLII:

Download original PDF: Jose Brothers vs MHA High Ct Judgement 2019

Themes: Acquisition de la nationalité, Acquisition par les enfants, Naturalisation et le mariage, Nationalité des réfugiés
Regions: Afrique du Sud
Year: 2019