Children born to Zimbabwean asylum-seekers or refugees in South Africa can now apply for South African citizenship.
In a recent development, Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi introduced new regulations under the South African Citizenship Act, allowing individuals born in South Africa to parents who sought asylum or refuge, to apply for naturalization once they reach 18 years of age.
One of the prerequisites is demonstrating proficiency in any of the official South African languages. The regulations provide an application form to facilitate this process.
Previously, applicants relied on affidavits, which proved to be an imperfect method as they were uncertain about the essential elements to include in their applications.
With the new regulations in place, applicants are provided with clear instructions, ensuring they know what to include in their applications.
According to the Department of Home Affairs, these regulations aim to streamline the application process for South African citizenship certificates.
Regarding the necessary documentation, the department emphasizes the importance of the applicant’s complete history.
“The documents being required of asylum seekers or refugees is to ensure that indeed they have been resident in the Republic from the time they were born until the time they submit an application under Section 4 of the Act.”
One of the requirements outlined in the new regulations is the ability to prove proficiency in one of the official South African languages. The department clarifies that this is a legal obligation specified in Section 5 of the South African Citizenship Act.
During the interview, candidates are expected to demonstrate their proficiency in speaking or writing the designated language.
“The applicant is expected to provide proof of knowledge regarding the official South African language by speaking or writing the said language during the interview.”