Unabriged budget address: Minister of Home Affairs


Budget vote speech by Minister of Home Affairs Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma

14 April 2010

Honourable Speaker

Honourable President Jacob Zuma

Honourable Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe

Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Malusi Gigaba

Honourable Members of the National Assembly

Honourable Chairperson and Members of the Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs

Distinguished guests

Fellow South Africans

May I take this opportunity to recognise, in our midst, the presence of leaders of various legal entities which support the work of the Department of Home Affairs including the Chairperson and CEO of the Film and Publications Board, Ms Thoko Mpumalwana and Ms Y Makhasi, Acting Chairperson of the Refugee Appeals Board, Mr Tjerk Damstra, Chief Executive Officer of the Government Printing Works, Mr Tom Moyane, Chairpersons of Home Affairs Stakeholder Forums Councillor Winneth Mtolo from Sisonke and Councillor Winile Ngaveli from OR Tambo District Municipality

My gratitude goes to the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee of Home Affairs Honourable Ben Martins and the entire Committee for their support, robust interaction and oversight.

May I express my gratitude to the Deputy Minister, Honourable Malusi Gigaba and the senior management of the department and all those officials who are honest and hard working.

Honourable Speaker,

April is a very significant month in the history of our country. Sadly, it marks the date in which the process of our oppression began with the landing of Jan van Riebeeck on our shores on 6 April 1652 and happily it also ended in April with the attainment of our democracy on 27 April 1994.

Critically, April reminds us of the supreme sacrifices that the people of this country made in order for us to achieve peace, freedom, democracy and justice while reclaiming our dignity as a people.

This month we commemorate the 17th anniversary of the assassination of Comrade Chris Hani, 17th anniversary of the death of the late President of the ANC OR Tambo and the 31st anniversary of the execution of Solomon Mahlangu. We are honoured by the presence in the gallery of the brother of Solomon Mahlangu, Lucas Mahlangu. These are some of our heroes, our patriots and revolutionaries who the youth should emulate.

We also join the National Assembly in extending our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of the late Deputy Minister of Health, Dr Molefi Paul Sefularo. Our thoughts and prayers reach out to his wife Kgomotso, the children and the broader Sefularo family.

Honourable members,

In the context of 2010 being designated as the year of action by the President of the Republic in his State of the Nation Address, we will redouble our efforts to speed up and improve the quality of service delivery.

In the budget vote speech last year, we committed to a concerted Registration and ID Campaign, over the next two years, directed at consolidating a secure and accurate National Population Register (NPR).

Led by President Jacob Zuma, we launched the Registration and ID Campaign on 23 March 2010 in Libode, O R Tambo District Municipality, Eastern Cape, having been piloted in the Sisonke and OR Tambo District Municipalities.

It is worth noting that we are establishing stakeholder forums nationally with a view to involving the citizenry directly in service delivery by monitoring performance, combating corruption and providing support both to Home Affairs and citizens who experience problems.

The strategic outcome of the campaign is:
* The registration of every child birth within 30 days of delivery
* The issuing of identity documents to every South African 16 years and above
* The discontinuation of the late registration of birth (LRB) process by December 2010. To this end, we registered 1,147 000 children and adults of which 354 588 was through the late registration of birth process. These are people whose births had never been registered and who therefore had never been issued with IDs. Identity documents restore the dignity of citizens and enable them to exercise rights and access services
* Due to the intensity of the campaign, we issued 834 353 ID’s to first time applicants which is 200 000 more in number than in the previous year
* We are also reviewing legislation pertaining to the registration of births and deaths, marriages and citizenship
* The ID campaign has started. We urge political parties to join the campaign now and not wait for the 2011 local government elections to take place, since there will be no special campaign.

Honourable members,

South Africa is about to witness a momentous and historic occasion for our country and indeed our continent, Africa the most beautiful spectacle in the world, the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

We reiterate the readiness of our government and people to host a successful 2010 FIFA World Cup in this land of Shaka, Moshoeshoe, Sekhukhune, Hintsa and Makhado. Home Affairs stands ready to welcome the multitude of soccer loving fans from Africa to Asia, from America to Europe, from South America to Oceana and from the Middle East to the Gulf Regions.

Our contribution to the successful hosting of the 2010 FIFA World Cup includes the first ever and historic Event Visa to facilitate the movement of spectators and visitors from around the world. All spectators in possession of a FIFA match ticket are eligible to apply for the event visa, free of charge, following the normal procedures at South African diplomatic missions abroad.

We have introduced the Advanced Passenger Processing system for airlines flying into South Africa. This system enables the screening of passengers before they depart for South Africa. The training of Airline Liaison Officers has recently been completed and will be deployed from the beginning of May to assist airlines to verify travel documents and personal particulars presented by travellers in the country of departure.

There will be dedicated express lanes at select international airports and co-located border posts with neighbouring countries. A 24-hour operational centre in Pretoria has been established to provide statistical information for operational planning and incident reporting in liaison with security agencies.

In collaboration with South African Revenue Service (SARS) and other relevant departments, we are implementing an enhanced Movement Control System to facilitate the secure movement of people in and out of the country in preparation for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The system is being piloted at OR Tambo International Airport and will be rolling out to 34 priority ports of entry before the World Cup, notwithstanding the changing of the service provider.

Honourable members,

Corruption is a challenge affecting all sectors of our society. This requires a national response to rid this cancer from our society. Home Affairs is no exception. We have enhanced our counter-corruption strategy whilst elevating the counter corruption and security unit into a fully fledged branch which will be led by a Deputy Director-General. We have also appointed counter corruption specialists to further capacitate the branch.

Progress has been made in enhancing the security of our systems. We have upgraded and extended the use of biometric access control to prevent illegal access to the department’s systems and thus ensure an audit trail and accountability. Another important counter corruption measure is the inclusion of the details of the mother on the birth certificate while enhancing its security features.

Honourable members,

In our intensive efforts to improve and enhance operational efficiencies, the department has made significant progress on the following:
* The passport backlog, which was causing serious problems for citizens, has been eliminated. In the 40 offices where the live-capture of biometrics is available, the turnaround time is 14 to 30 days
* The track and trace system was extended to cover the registration of births, marriages, deaths, passports and some immigration permits. This has expedited up processes, enhanced security while enabling us to contact citizens via SMS
* We are collaborating with the Banks for the verification of clients’ information against the department’s database, to prevent identity theft, protect citizens’ identity and improve banking security
* We have improved access to Home Affairs services by establishing 21 new facilities exceeding our target of 13 and upgrading a number of other offices. A new refugee reception centre was opened in Musina. There has been an aggressive campaign using mobile units to access rural areas and schools
* To get Home Affairs front offices right, we are piloting an electronic queue management system that will function by providing ticket numbers, directing clients to relevant counters for service It also informs clients of approximate waiting time while reducing congestion in public areas. The average waiting time in Khayelitsha Regional office where the system is currently being piloted, has been reduced from 45 minutes to between 25 and 30 minutes
* We have successfully relocated the refugee reception centre from Nyanga to Maitland
* Our refugee reception centres are now issuing asylum seeker permits within a day, unlike previously, when it took a week to issue the same permit.

Honourable members,

Despite these achievements, more needs to be done to complete the sustainable transformation of the department. Our priorities for this financial year, among others are:
* To ensuring an accurate, credible and secure NPR, birth will be the single point of entry. This will also make it easy to acquire subsequent documents especially the ID and to access services. To this end, we have connected 142 hospitals to Home Affairs systems, last year and this year we will connect 120 more. Mothers are able to register their babies even before they leave the hospitals. We will be opening 10 new front offices in this financial year to improve access
* A major risk impacting on the NPR’s security is the number of duplicate identity numbers, which also frustrates and causes untold grief to citizens. We have reduced the backlog from 29 000 to about 6 000. Measures will be implemented to eliminate the remaining backlog and minimising the creation of duplicate identity numbers in future
* Together with KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Social Development, Dr Meshack Radebe, we have agreed on the expansion of Home Affairs services through the use of One-Stop Development Centres beginning with Mhlabuyalingana, Msinga and Nkandla. This project will be rolled out to other areas in the province
* We are undertaking a review of immigration policy and have begun consultations with Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU). Going forward, we will convene forums to bring together and consult with a wide spectrum of stakeholders. We will also be preparing legislation for consideration by Parliament
* We are committed to achieving an unqualified audit within one year and a clean audit within two years, having addressed negative findings in the previous audits. The internal audit and risk management functions have been strengthened and controls are being implemented. Such controls include a new revenue receipting system which has been installed in 100 high volume offices
* We are putting infrastructure in place in all our front offices to ensure our readiness when the smartcard is introduced hopefully in the next financial year
* There is a need to re-orientate Home Affairs officials and introduce change interventions in order to engender an ethos of pride and service excellence. We will develop a workforce that is self motivated, ethical, competent and accountable
* A Learning Centre is being established and will be the vehicle for the training of all staff
* All Deputy Directors-General (DDG) posts have now been filled, with the exception of the Chief Information Officer and the newly created post of DDG for Counter Corruption and Security. A number of other critical Chief Director and Director posts were filled.

Honourable members,

We take this opportunity to introduce our new Director-General, Mr Mkuseli Apleni, appointed on 1 April 2010.

We express our gratitude for the services of Mr Mavuso Msimang, our former Director-General. We wish him well in his endeavours.

In conclusion, I am confident that with the support of Honourable members and society at large, we will indeed succeed in building a transformed Home Affairs, as a department of excellence and an employer of choice. I hope that this budget vote will meet with your support.

I thank you!

Issued by: Department of Home Affairs
14 April 2010