Group plans protest at SA handling of refugees

The Consortium for Refugees and Migrants in South Africa this week complained over the worsening refugee situation in the country.

CoRMSA is a national network of organisations advocating for the protection and promotion of the rights of the millions of asylum seekers, refugees and migrants in SA – many of whom are Zimbabwean.

It blamed the worsening situation on new policy decisions. “Refugees and asylum seekers not only face threats to their lives because of xenophobia, they also face challenges from government officials who deny them services or demand bribes,” said the group’s spokesman, Gwadamirai Majange.

“Last year the South African government put in place a number of new policies such as the closure of Refugee Reception Offices in cities and the withholding of transit permits from asylum seekers at ports of entry which has seen them being denied the right to apply for asylum,” Majange said.

Her organisation will launch a campaign on June 19, the eve of World Refugee Day, aimed at ensuring that South Africa honours its international obligations to protect refugees.

“The protest is aimed at highlighting some of the challenges refugees face in South Africa, among them corruption, abuse by some officials and security officers at the Department of Home Affairs, difficulty in accessing documentation, lack of respect for their human rights and access to justice as witnessed by the treatment of those detained at the Lindela Repatriation Centre,” added Majange.

Post published in: Africa News

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