2 Home Affairs Officials Dismissed, 4 Suspended for Processing Fake SA Passports and IDs
2 Home Affairs Officials Dismissed, 4 Suspended for Processing Fake SA Passports and IDs. Photo: iStockPhoto

In its ongoing clean-up operations, the Department of Home Affairs has dismissed two employees for fraud relating to the selling of South African identities to foreign nationals who do not deserve such documents. The generation of fake SA IDs and passports has led to travel challenges for genuine South Africans, with the Ryan Air Afrikaans questionnaire to prove one’s South African-ness being the most recent controversy (and since disbanded).

Another four officials have been suspended for similar offences.

Phathisani Outshiki, from the Benoni office, was found guilty of gross misconduct for processing 111 documents for undeserving foreign nationals using particulars of South African citizens for a fee of R1 000 per application.

Ninety-eight of these documents were passports and 13 were IDs.

Outshiki pleaded guilty and he was subsequently dismissed. However, he is appealing his dismissal.

Morena David Motsamai, from the Germiston office, was found guilty of gross misconduct in that he processed 13 passport applications for undeserving foreign nationals using particulars of South Africans. He was paid between R2 500 and R5 000 per application.

Motsamai pleaded guilty and did not appeal the sanction. He was subsequently dismissed.

The police are pursuing criminal charges against both Outshiki and Motsamai.

In addition, the police are tracking the South Africans who sold their identities and the foreign nationals who wanted to buy South African documents they “do not deserve”, said Home Affairs.

Fortunately, all the fraudulently processed IDs and passports were flagged as fraudulent and were removed from Home Affairs records thus rendering them useless and unusable by the people who acquired them. None of these documents was ever used.

On Friday, 1 July, the department suspended four officials at the Tzaneen office who were allegedly processing fraudulent documents. Their disciplinary hearings are scheduled to take place within 10 working days.

All six officials have been on the radar of the Home Affairs Counter Corruption Branch without their knowledge and them suspecting anything hence it was easy to catch them.

“We shall fearlessly and ruthlessly root out corruption wherever it rears its ugly head. I have no doubt that with support from members of the public who are patriotic enough to report these corrupt practices, we dare not fail but win this battle,” said Home Affairs Minister, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi.

Motsoaledi added that his department is on the trail of more Home Affairs officials who are involved in these shameful acts and will continue to arrest them.

In the same vein, the Minister commended the extraordinary majority of Home Affairs officials who still serve with honesty and integrity despite the lucrative temptations which a few others, who are now being arrested, have fallen into.

The Minister has once again urged South Africans to stop selling their identities to foreign nationals.

“If you sell your identity, you are replaced by a foreign national on our database which means that you will not be able to access services in the country,” Motsoaledi said. – SAnews.gov.za