The Department of Home Affairs says the message, purported to be from the department, announcing that the lifespan of the green barcoded ID book comes to an end on 31 March 2018 is NOT true.

One of the messages which has gone viral amongst South Africans.

Various versions of the message – urging people to share the news – have appeared on social media and are being emailed to South Africans abroad, many of whom still have the green ID book.

“No such announcement has been made by the department,” said Home Affairs. “We wish to make it clear that the green barcoded ID book remains a legal form of identification and will continue to be until such time that the Live Capture System is rolled out to all Home Affairs offices to enable South Africans to apply for Smart ID cards at their nearest offices.

A version of the fake news about green bar-coded ID books coming to an end, which has gone viral amongst South Africans

“The department has developed a plan to systematically phase out the green ID book and ultimately consolidate the restoration, common citizenship, identity and dignity to South Africans.

“To this end, we call on South Africans to apply for Smart ID cards at any of the 180 offices that are equipped with the Live Capture System,” the department said.

In addition, the department has established a partnership with FNB, Standard Bank, Nedbank and ABSA to create an online portal where clients can lodge their application without visiting a Home Affairs office.

To apply for a new Smart Card ID, visit the Home Affairs website, and click on the eHomeAffairs icon.