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Last modified: 01 Mar 2017
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New Home Affairs Stakeholders Forum established

24 February 2017
Kouga Speaker Horatio Hendricks (sixth right) is the new chairperson of the Kouga Home Affairs Stakeholders Forum. On his right is Home Affairs District Manager: Operations for Sarah Baartman District and Nelson Mandela Bay Thembinkosi Mnunu. Other members of the executive committee are (from left) Mfundo Sobele (Public Relations), Amos Mabukane (additional member), Mfundo Gxuluwe (additional member), Sindiswa Mandeka (additional member), Hattingh Bornman (Ward 11 Councillor), Bulelwa Dlotho (Secretary), Paula Sibeno (additional member), Mervin Averies (Deputy Secretary) and Xolisa Ntozini (additional member).

Kouga Speaker Horatio Hendricks (sixth right) is the new chairperson of the Kouga Home Affairs Stakeholders Forum. On his right is Home Affairs District Manager: Operations for Sarah Baartman District and Nelson Mandela Bay Thembinkosi Mnunu. Other members of the executive committee are (from left) Mfundo Sobele (Public Relations), Amos Mabukane (additional member), Mfundo Gxuluwe (additional member), Sindiswa Mandeka (additional member), Hattingh Bornman (Ward 11 Councillor), Bulelwa Dlotho (Secretary), Paula Sibeno (additional member), Mervin Averies (Deputy Secretary) and Xolisa Ntozini (additional member).

The task of ensuring that all residents are registered and can be accounted for in the country’s register does only reside with the Department of Home Affairs but rests with all stakeholders in society.

This was said by the new chairperson of the Kouga Home Affairs Stakeholders Forum, Kouga Speaker Horatio Hendricks, during the re-establishment of the forum at the Humansdorp Council Chambers on Thursday (23 February).

Hendricks said challenges brought about by undocumented persons, be they citizens or foreign nationals, cut across various sectors and departments.

“This is why we must combine our efforts and pool resources collectively to ensure that people have the necessary documents as required by law,” he said.

“Take for instance the issue of education. If the child does not have a birth certificate, that child is not recognised by the Department of Education and is thus not catered for in the budgetary processes for basic needs such as stationery and the school feeding scheme. The requisite number of teachers may also not be provided should more children be without certificates.

“This puts a school in a very difficult position as the learner is present physically but is rendered non-existent by bureaucracy,” he added.

The forums came into being in 2010 when then Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma saw a need for an all-inclusive campaign of ensuring people had official Identity Documents.

The municipality, through the Council Speaker, chairs the forum and the secretariat is led by Home Affairs as the custodian of the function. Other members are elected from participating stakeholders to form an executive committee.

Home Affairs District Manager: Operations for Sarah Baartman District and Nelson Mandela Metro Thembinkosi Mnunu, who presided over the elections, thanked the Speaker for the eagerness to ensure that the structure was in place.

“You are now one of three municipalities in the province to establish the forum in the manner prescribed since we revised terms of office for the structures. We anticipate great working success in executing our duties,” said Mnunu.

The terms of office of the forums were revised to be in line with the terms of Councils after last year’s local government elections.

The forum will lead campaigns, especially focusing on birth registrations and IDs.

Home Affairs will soon hold an induction workshop to familiarise executive committee members with their duties.