• Eastern Cape Rising Sun

Home Affairs offline for days?

By Zolile Mate

Residents are furious at Home Affairs in East London claiming that their systems are down for the past week, causing chaos and anxiety at their offices in Fleet Street. After waiting for hours in long queues, residents are turned away, unable to be helped, returning home hungry and tired.

“I came to do my passport because I have to be out of the country for work reasons. It has been three days now and still no joy. They (officials at Home Affairs) allow us to queue, but their systems are down for days. We are sick of this now.” claimed a West Bank resident.

“We have no water to drink and there are elders who have high blood pressure and diabetes and must deal with this situation. What happens if they faint here or worse, collapse and die?” asked one concerned resident from Beacon Bay waiting in the queue for his Identity Document (ID).

A mother of a 17-year-old girl who was also in queue to replace her lost ID book and apply for her daughter's ID had questioned officials at Home Affairs. “Upon asking the manager, I was told that this is a National problem with the systems being down and they (Home Affairs) cannot do anything to help us. So, I asked, why allow people to enter and queue for such long hours, if they cannot help us? To which she said they do not know when the problem could be fixed and the systems working again, so they allow people to queue,” concluded the lady.

Attempts to get hold of Home Affairs were unsuccessful at the time of going to press.

This is a developing story.

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