ATC231129: Report of the Select Committee on Security and Justice on the progress of Executive Undertakings made by the Minister of Home Affairs, during the Taking Parliament to the People in Ugu District Municipality, KwaZulu-Natal from 14 to 18 November 2022, referred to the Committee on 4 August 2023, dated 29 November 2023

NCOP Security and Justice

Report of the Select Committee on Security and Justice on the progress of Executive Undertakings made by the Minister of Home Affairs, during the Taking Parliament to the People in Ugu District Municipality, KwaZulu-Natal from 14 to 18 November 2022, referred to the Committee on 4 August 2023, dated 29 November 2023.



The Minister of Home Affairs made the following Executive Undertakings during the Taking Parliament to the People in Ugu District Municipality, KwaZulu-Natal from 14 to 18 November 2022:


  1. Executive Undertaking 1:   Home Affairs officials have no right to limit the number of people getting services per day. This issue it taken very seriously and the Minister undertook to address staff behaviour.
  2. Executive Undertaking 2: The Department will increase the number of mobile offices and will acquire another 120 mobile offices in the next financial year. There are 14 mobile offices in KwaZulu-Natal and the Department will add 40 more mobile clinics to service the province.
  3. Executive Undertaking 3: The Department will acquire mobile offices with satellite dishes to minimise disruption during load shedding.
  4. Executive Undertaking 4: To guard against identity theft, the Department wants new births to be registered within 30 days of birth and a Birth Certificate issued.
  5. Executive Undertaking 5: The Department has piloted the provision of Home Affairs services at Menlyn Mall and is currently assessing if more services are made available to people.
  6. Executive Undertaking 6: The Department will be undertaking a digitisation process. The Department has 350 million records and 10 000 unemployed graduates with ICT qualifications which will be hired to digitise the record systems in the Department.
  7. Executive Undertaking 7: The Department is addressing corruption. Biometrics with retina recognition are introduced to curb the scourge of fraudulent documents. Arrests are being made concerning corrupt staff however investigations prove to be lengthy and costly.
  8. Executive Undertaking 8: SA Connect seeks to meet the technology goals of the National Development Plan of creating an inclusive information society and position the government to play an enabling role in the provision of broadband to the number of underserved district municipalities and thereby bridge broadband connectivity gaps.


2. Committee consideration


On 22 November 2023, Minister A Motsoaledi and relevant officials of the Department appeared before the Committee to report on the progress made in implementing the executive undertakings under consideration.


  1. 3. Progress Report by the Ministry and the South African Police Service
    3.1 Executive Undertaking 1: Officials at all offices have been informed not to send away clients. The roll out of Branch Booking Appointment System (BABS) has been instrumental in addressing the challenge of clients being returned as offices are attending to few walk-ins as most clients utilise BABS.


3.2 Executive Undertaking 2: The Province has received 3 trucks out of the 20 mobile trucks the Department procured in the previous financial year 2022/23, three of which were allocated to Kwazulu-Natal have been allocated to Umngeni office in the EThekwini Metro, Pongola Office in the Zululand District Municipality and to Ixopo Office in the Harry Gwala District Municipality.  The offices that benefitted are now able to do outreach programmes of the Department and also participate in programmes as requested by stakeholders within their respective Districts. A further 100 mobile fleet are in the production stage with the suppliers. Fifteen (15) of these will be allocated to the province which will make a total of 32 allocated. The introduction of self-service kiosks will also cover the mobile units in that the Department is planning to conceptualise virtual interactive self-service machines (KIOSK) for the mobile trucks.

3.3 Executive Undertaking 3: The procurement process to procure nine (9) flat panel satellite dishes which will be fitted to the trucks to improve connectivity is still underway with SITA. In November 2023 a proposal was received and Home Affairs requested SITA to revise the proposal due to financial implications, but the current MTN and Vodacom routers are working well in mobile trucks when there is load shedding.

3.4 Executive Undertaking 4: As part of the strategy to move birth registration from local offices to where births occur, The Department of Home Affairs in collaboration with the National Department of Health have an MOU among others, to facilitate the allocation of office space in health facilities with the intention to bring services to the people at 346 health facilities across the country. Currently the Department is represented at 161 health facilities that can register births and print them on spot which represent 68.35% of births delivered across the country. The Department is in the process of connecting additional 91 health facilities by end of the financial year 2023/24.

3.5 Executive Undertaking 5: The Minister of Home Affairs, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, officially opened a new Home Affairs office at the Menlyn Park Shopping Centre in Tshwane on 6 March 2023. This is in fulfilment of a commitment to making Home Affairs services more accessible to people. The new office offers application and collections services for IDs and passports. Clients have the convenience of applying for these services when they visit the Mall for their shopping. Home Affairs Menlyn Office is expected to take off pressure from high-volume offices around Tshwane, such as Byron’s Place in the city center, Mamelodi and Centurion. The Department of Home Affairs has signed a mutually beneficial partnership with the owners of the Menlyn Park Shopping Centre. There is also a plan to relocate Pinetown Office to Pavilion Mall because Department of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPWI) has not been able to find alternative accommodation for Pinetown office.

3.6 Executive Undertaking 6: The digitisation project is intended to employ 10 000 unemployed graduates in the fields of IT and documentation management and is being rolled-out in three phases. In the first phase the Department earmarked to recruit 2000 unemployed youth. However, 1142 were recruited and the plan is to fill the outstanding posts during the second phase. The advert of 4000 cohorts for 2nd phase closed on the 03 March 2023 and of those 2693 will be appointed in December 2023. The third phase will conclude the recruitment of the last cohort which will be an addition of 6170 youths. This number will close the deficit for the 2nd phase. The total number of records that have been digitised so far are 328 800, inclusive of 7 141 388 images. This performance is far above the target of 12 000 records set for the second quarter (July – September 2023) of the 2023/24 financial year.

3.7 Executive undertaking 7: ABIS has introduced Facial Recognition capability on the Web-based platform and is operational at Menlyn Mall Office. The plan is to roll out the facial recognition to all modernised offices once the web-based platform is stable at Menlyn Office. The Iris biometric modality is still under development and is planned for completion by March 2024. The roll out of these modalities to all live capture offices will assist in securing of systems and preventing identity fraud.

3.8 Executive undertaking 8: Broadband connectivity is a mandatory service only provided by SITA. SITA has indicated that they are not ready to implement phase 2 of SA Connect.


4. Observations and Key Findings

In noting the progress report given by the Department in relation to the implementation of the executive undertakings under review, the Committee made the following observations and key findings:

The Committee welcomed the presentation and update by the Minister. The achievements have led to an improvement of services especially in the mobile support to rural areas. The Committee further requested the Department to ensure that it increases its efforts, throughout the country, to target the rural areas, the villages, the farm areas, and so forth, because those vulnerable communities need this services the most.

The Committee noted an improvement in the registration of children at birth with the service having greatly improved the speed of capturing and registering of the child.

However, the Committee noted that the accuracy of capturing must be improved. The service must be excellent in its execution. In past times, there was no care with the registration of the child’s name. This became noticeable in a person’s life to live with that incorrect name or incorrect birth date. The service has greatly improved over the years but we need to find ways of addressing the accuracy and improving it in this current dispensation through staff training, error monitoring and quality control processes. The Committee welcomed the response from the Minister explaining the rectification process that exists and the initiative by government to employ 10000 unemployed graduates to digitize 350 million records.  

The Committee noted the improvements in office space with regard to Menlyn Park and Pine Town and the improved access to the services of Home Affairs.

Members raised that South Africans appear to always be seeking the services of the Department of Home Affairs. The response from government must translate to meeting the needs of the customers, the citizens, through improving the convenience and providing a satisfactory experience that we are running a caring government.

The Committee congratulated the Minister on following up on undocumented foreigners and citizens. But the issue of crime and corruption remains a question that needs addressing. Members provided verbal evidence of known persons who fraudulently produce visas with a birth certificate. The matter has been brought to the attention of the authorities but not much has been done about it by immigration officials or the police service. 

The Minister requested the information from the member, for the Counter Corruption Unit, to follow up on the alleged fraudulent activities. The Minister further corrected the assumption that the Department is afraid to tackle people from other countries and reminded the Committee of successes in the past year with the Department and in particular with a Pakistani national who was fraudulently producing passport.  In 2023, the Department deported 67 Pakistani nationals at OR Tambo International, who were entering into the country using illegal visas. In the same week the Department deported a further 11 persons from the same country who were entering through Cape Town International Airport. The Department also managed, through the court, to deport a Russian lady, who came to South Africa without documentation claiming to be a refugee. The Court determined the accused had to apologize to the people of South Africa and she was banned from entering South Africa for the next 5 years.

The Committee requested clarity on how far the engagements with SITA were progressing and whether there was some kind of time frame when this matter will be addressed.

The Minister noted that the Department of Home Affairs is very dependent on SITA and if anything happens because of problems at SITA, Home affairs will be the hardest hit at any one time, even though many government departments are also serviced by SITA. The Minister indicated that they had raised their concerns and requirements all the time and are engaging CSIR, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research to try and help on this issue. The Minister reported that he has already written 3 letters to 3 different ministers who were in communication dealing with SITA, but the situation remains unresolved. The Ministry has since escalated the matter to the level of the President and they are hoping some progress will come from this.




5.1 The Committee recommended that the Department focus its efforts on increasing mobile support in rural areas throughout the country as vulnerable communities need these services the most and this will enhance the prestige of the Department.

5.2 In respect of the registration of children at birth, the Committee recommended that the Department should implement training to ensure that upon registration, children’s names are recorded correctly. The Committee was of the view that this is a historical problem that the Department should address with urgency.

5.3 The Committee urged the Department to prioritise the needs of citizens in all their work and to ensure that their services are rolled out in a manner that takes into account the needs of citizens and communities. Members emphasised that service delivery is of paramount importance in addressing the needs of citizens effectively and ensuring that we are a responsive and caring government.

5.4 The Committee encouraged the Department to continue with the good work it is doing in addressing corruption via the Counter Corruption Unit as these steps are progress towards promoting and fostering respect between the Department and citizens in terms of service delivery.

5.5 The Committee recommended that the Department makes every effort to ensure that SITA is rolling out its services effectively and timeously to improve service delivery throughout the country. In this regard, the Department should make every effort to hold SITA accountable to deliver its services in a timely fashion.



Report for consideration.