Minister Leon Schreiber on arrests by SAPS of persons alleged to have violated immigration laws

Minister of Home Affairs commends SAPS for arrests and offers support to enable successful prosecution of persons alleged to have violated immigration laws

The Minister of Home Affairs, Dr Leon Schreiber, commends officers attached to the Paarl branch of the South African Police Service (SAPS) for executing arrests related to alleged violations of the Prevention and Combatting of Corrupt Activities Act, an offense in terms of the Immigration Act, and offences in terms of the Prevention and Combatting of Trafficking in Persons Act on Saturday, 6 July. The Minister further offers the Directorate for Priority Crimes and Investigation (DPCI) the DepartmentÔÇÖs support and cooperation to enable swift and successful prosecutions in this case.

The approach of Home Affairs to the dual imperatives of attracting lawful investment and skills to grow the economy and create jobs, while restoring the integrity of South AfricaÔÇÖs immigration system by ensuring that violations are prevented and prosecuted, is anchored in our respect for the Constitution and the rule of law. This requires the Department to enable lawful investment, tourism and the attraction of skills on the one hand, while enforcing a zero-tolerance approach to fraud, corruption and unlawful actions on the other hand.

Building an immigration system that enables economic growth and job creation while safeguarding our country from illegality will require a whole-of-government approach and collaboration across departments. The Department of Home Affairs is committed to playing its role alongside law enforcement and prosecutorial services, and invites the DPCI to contact the Department for any assistance it can provide in this regard.

The swift arrest of persons alleged to have violated our immigration laws in the same week that the Minister of Home Affairs extended a concession that safeguards applicants who abide by the law, sends a strong message that the new leadership at Home Affairs understands the differentiated approach that is required to grow the economy while securing our country.

The granting of the concession to legal applicants indicates that tourists, investors and skilled workers who respect South African law can look forward to improvements in Home Affairs systems, while the swift arrest of alleged lawbreakers by SAPS and the cooperation of Home Affairs in seeking their successful prosecution serves as a warning to criminal elements that the days of impunity are over.

By pursuing the dual imperatives of growing the economy and upholding the rule of law, we will build a working Home Affairs that makes South Africa work.

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