The Democratic Alliance (DA) calls on the Minister of Home Affairs, Aaron Motsoaledi, to implement urgent queue management measures outside of Home Affairs offices to keep citizens safe.
Despite scenes of citizens huddled in long queues outside of Home Affairs offices across South Africa, with no social distancing measures in place, no apparent action has been taken. Instead the ANC government sends battalions to the beaches to arrest surfers.
Although Home Affairs have slashed available services, queue marshalls stationed at Home Affairs offices throughout South Africa as part of the failed 'war on queues' initiative seem incapable of carrying out their role effectively.
The 'war on queues' was announced as a ministerial priority in 2018 and in 2019 measures hot spotting long queues, a ticketing system, special queue for online systems and an app to allow renewals to be processed without applying in the office were announced by Home Affairs. To date, all these initiatives have been false promises.
Citizens are driven to Home Affairs offices due to a lack of birth registration facilities at hospitals and a lack of effective mobile units to take basic Home Affairs services to the people.
The staff usually positioned in the Home Affairs offices that are now sitting at home while these people queue outside for hours could be allocated to assist with queue management outside of the offices. Queue marshalls could be monitored to ensure effective queue management. The SAPS could be called on to provide monitoring services. But doing nothing is not an option.
The DA will write to the Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs to demand a plan be tabled by the Minister as he appears unmoved by scenes outside of Home Affairs offices.
We will continue to fight for the rights of South Africans to be treated with dignity by the Government that is supposed to serve them.