Home Affairs Nightmare - Please Help!

Cartman13

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2009
Messages
213
Good day all.
Herewith follows my nightmare with regards to a maze of incompetence, also known by some people as the Department of Home Affairs.

My passport is due to expire on the 22nd of June 2019.

My work consists of construction projects in various African countries, therefor without a passport, I cannot work.

So on the 20th of December 2018 I decided to apply online via the DHA E-Channel website. I was told to proceed to my nearest branch for the capturing of my biometrics and to make the payment. I've applied for a new passport and the new Smart ID card.

On the 20th and the 21st the system was offline at my local branch - Uitenhage (Eastern Cape).

I decided to leave it and go on holiday.

On the 4th of January 2019 I went again, and besides having to sit there the whole day, my biometrics was captured and I made the required payment.

On the 6th of January I left the country for work.

After about 7 weeks (end February), I asked my mother to go to the branch and query the status of my application, since I haven't received any collection notice.

When she went to the branch, she was told that the application has not been processed yet, as there is an outstanding payment due.

I emailed the branch manager my receipt and asked her to assist with the problem. Only after a few days, the 25th of February 2019, she sent an email to the head office and requesting them to link my application to my payment.

Then for the next few days my emails went unanswered.

On the 7th of March the manager responded, and said that my application was declined, and that she cannot see why. And that I must come to do a new application.

I asked her what about the payment that I have already made, and she told me that they usually request the head office to link the application to the payment, but that at times it is not successful. She suggested that I go to the branch again and do a new application and pay again.

Then after that I can request a refund for the unsuccessful application. She said that this will be better than waiting for the Head Office to respond.

I eventually came back to SA to try and sort the mess out.

I went to my local branch again on the 25th of March to re-apply. There they told me that they cannot open a new application for me as there is currently one in progress on my profile. Various personnel then tried to fix the problem as well as speaking to people in Head Office. They have eventually been told to send an email and request the application to be cancelled.

This up and down went on until the 27th. On the 28th I decided to go the Port Elizabeth branch for assistance. There I was told I only need to pay. So I decided to pay again, just to see if it would fix the problem. Which it didn't.

In-between this, I tried to do an online application again to see what would happen. And it also told me that my application cannot be processed as there is an application in progress.

On the 1st of April I went back to my local branch to see the manager. (She was on leave the previous week)

She also tried various things and spoke to support guys from Head Office. But without success. The guy from Head Office told her to send an email to a certain person to request them to delete all the applications from my profile so that we can start a fresh.

Every day until the 4th, she told me that she is still waiting for them to respond.

On the 4th of April I decided to fly to Johannesburg and go to the Head Office in Pretoria. There they told me that they do not deal with the public, and that all queries must be made through the Call Centre. (Which I have also called about 5 times by this date. They were also not able to assist as they just tell me that their system shows all the applications is cancelled and that I can proceed to a branch to do a new application)

I then tried a branch around the corner of the Head Office, where a guy that is supposedly working in the Head Office and is just assisting at the branch told me that he escalated my problem to someone in the Head Office that will attend to my problem and that he will let me know once it is fixed. (I am still waiting for that call!)

In the meantime the department also "upgraded" their system on the weekend of 31st March, which to this date is still giving various problems, according to employees and news articles.

On the 5th someone suggested I must go to the branch in the Johannesburg CBD. There was a guy there that is quite good with solving problems.

I went there, but he was also unsuccessful, as well as some of the other staff that tried. It was also after 15:30 so they couldn't call the Head Office for assistance.

He said he would sort it out for me on the 8th, but apparently they have been struggling with the system on the 8th and today on the 9th.

Since the 3rd of April I have also been in contact with the Director General of Home Affairs, who have twice now forwarded my problem on to someone else, who then also forwarded on to another person to attend to my problem.

So here I am today, still without a passport and all out of ideas, and also being on unpaid leave now for more than a week.

What I would like to know from someone on the forum, is if anyone knows someone in the DHA Head Office that can assist me directly?

Or if anybody knows of bodies or attorneys, that can assist me with this problem regarding the incompetence of the DHA?

I see one gets Immigration attorneys, but I am not sure if they will be able to assist in a Civil Service matter?

I just cannot fathom the fact that there is no one in the whole of the DHA that cannot just go into a profile and press the delete. I cannot!

I am willing to pay for a lawyer that is able to assist me, because in the end I am going to lose a lot more money, as I am going to lose my job.

Thanks for reading this essay.

Regards,
 

dunkyd

Executive Member
Joined
Mar 5, 2009
Messages
5,468
Start again without any mention of previous applications
 

boanergesza1

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 6, 2009
Messages
255
I wonder if that is how they now stop skilled migrants from leaving the country.
 

wombling

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2012
Messages
555
I feel your pain. It took me 3 and a half years to get unabridged birth certificates for both myself and my wife. This wasn't simply leaving it alone and hoping it would come right over time. This was in person visits and tons of emails between loads of people and in the end, they still messed up my wife's mothers surname on the certificate. We have asked for it to be rectified as it is incorrect and they refuse despite being shown the original birth certificate and her parents documents. Since the unabridged birth certificate isn't 100% right and we cannot fix it we decided to keep it as it is.

Good luck though. Persistence is the only thing that will help. Keep making a noise with the Director General. I have heard many people get some success that way.
 

Cartman13

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2009
Messages
213
Sjoe. It is really sad to have to beg a civil "service" department of your country to help you.

But thanks. I will keep trying.
 

clickingbuttons

Expert Member
Joined
Mar 18, 2018
Messages
1,132
I feel your pain. It took me 3 and a half years to get unabridged birth certificates for both myself and my wife. This wasn't simply leaving it alone and hoping it would come right over time. This was in person visits and tons of emails between loads of people and in the end, they still messed up my wife's mothers surname on the certificate. We have asked for it to be rectified as it is incorrect and they refuse despite being shown the original birth certificate and her parents documents. Since the unabridged birth certificate isn't 100% right and we cannot fix it we decided to keep it as it is.

Good luck though. Persistence is the only thing that will help. Keep making a noise with the Director General. I have heard many people get some success that way.

Reading this makes me very sad. Did you have to wait 3 months each time for them to make the latest changes?
 

wombling

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2012
Messages
555
Reading this makes me very sad. Did you have to wait 3 months each time for them to make the latest changes?
We applied and then we visited SA once or twice a year. My parents had copies of all the paperwork and also visited in person on our behalf. Every time we visited, the answer was always "its processing". Apparently that means the archive / records people are taking their sweet time. They escalated it so much I think it was on Jesus' desk for a few weeks. The key is to be persistent. We at least had an understanding agent that was dealing with our paperwork. Apparently other African countries are quite bad so paperwork from Africa is accepted as usually inaccurate and "best effort" because they accepted all our paperwork along with all the mistakes which we pointed out to them. They also saw we waited more than 3 years and didn't bother asking for anything else. Your mileage may vary though. Some people don't have so many problems.
 
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