South Africa: Concern over high number of migrant children with no proof of birth

Published: 9/Jul/2019
Source: Cape Times / IndependentOnline

By  Yolisa Tswanya

Cape Town – Nearly 30% of foreign children in youth and care centres in the Western Cape have no documents of proof of birth.

This was among the findings of a breakthrough study by the Scalabrini Centre in Cape Town. The centre offers specialised services to migrants, refugees and South Africans.

The report found that many foreign children in South Africa faced a high risk of statelessness, meaning they were not considered nationals by any state under law.

Study author and Scalabrini Centre spokesperson Lotte Manicom said the aim of the study was to establish the number of foreign children in care, and gain a deeper understanding of the issues and challenges faced by the children as well as the institutions caring for them.

She said it was found that 40% of all children faced statelessness, with a further 47% being at considerable risk in this regard.

“In Gauteng, 27% of foreign children in child and youth care centres have no documents or proof of birth. In Limpopo, this percentage is as high as 82%, while in the Western Cape it is at 27%.

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Themes: Acquisition by children, Birth Registration
Regions: South Africa
Year: 2019