South Africa Says Nearly 600 Foreigners’ Fake Marriages Cancelled, Phony Passports Seized in Nationwide Crackdown

Published: 6/Oct/2022
Source: Voice of America Zimbabwe

Thuso Khumalo

South African Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi says his department is tracking foreign nationals, who engaged in fraudulent marriages to get citizenship of South Africa, as well as those using fraudulent passports.

Minister Motsoaledi told reporters in Johannesburg on Thursday that since January 2022, his department has reversed 553 fraudulent marriages.

He said close to 200 passports were investigated and their numbers blocked on the national population register. Motsoaledi said they are tightening rules and regulations for obtaining by changing in identifying people.

“… We are adding the iris, a dot in your eye. The iris is an identification technique. Your iris is like your fingerprint. It’s yours and yours alone.”

Some foreign nationals have allegedly married South Africans they never met by just using their stolen documents.

Others are allegedly using South African passports obtained using fraudulently acquired identity documents.

Greatman Mkhwebu said indications are that some Zimbabweans may be affected as there are some with fake marriage certificates and passports.

“I think this will touch a lot of people. Things are not going well. When he (Motsoaledi) spoke about this last time, I thought he was joking. It seems he is serious. Some Zimbabweans may land in big trouble as some weddings may have been conducted as per the laws of the country and the same applies to obtaining passports. Some people were relaxing thinking that all is well after obtaining those documents but it seems everything is going wrong for those with fake documents.”

At least 178,000 Zimbabweans are currently in the process of applying for new work permits following the termination of Zimbabweans Special Exemption Permits. Holders of these permits have been given up to June next year to get new documents for living and working in South Africa.

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Themes: Naturalisation and Marriage, ID Documents and Passports
Regions: South Africa
Year: 2022