We are currently seeing an extremely damaging development: a high number of rejections are coming from the VFS or the Department of Home Affairs for applications submitted in South Africa, but also submitted overseas.
Backlog and Visa Processing Times
We all know that there’s a massive backlog in South Africa, that’s why the Department of Home Affairs keeps on extending certain deadlines. There is also a massive backlog due to the centralisation attempt from the overseas missions. That has been reversed, but obviously there are still many applications stuck processing.
Many Applications Unjustly Rejected
Now, it seems that that Home Affairs officials have clear KPIs to adjudicate X number (around 20) applications per day. This leads to a very, very high number of rejections. The rejection reasoning in most cases we have seen are wrong. The DHA wording is bad and does not withstand an appeal.
This is a very unfortunate situation. We had a client where the rejection said, “Well, the doctor didn’t pick up the phone, therefore we couldn’t verify the medical certificate.” This is just a single incident: one of our employees came back from VFS yesterday and she shared with that most immigration firms collecting these rejections from the VFS offices are all having the same issues. There is a very clear pattern emerging now from within Home Affairs.
Prepare for the Worst
If you have outstanding applications, you need to brace yourself for some negative decisions. You will need to prepare an appeal, which must be submitted within 10 working days, but the appeal itself takes 4 to 5 months.
Currently, the Department of Home Affairs is doing nobody a favour; they are just shifting work from one department to the next. That’s great for the people in the one department, not so great for the rest, and terrible for the clients. It’s very cost intensive and is in no interest to the country and economy, and quite frankly also not to the foreigners who have made South Africa their new home.
Make your Voice Heard
If you can, put pressure on Home Affairs. We will continue our own lobbying efforts in this regard.
IBN Immigration Solutions has assisted numerous clients in successfully receiving their Permanent Residence in South Africa and would love to assist you too! We are familiar with all the requirements for applications, possible red-flags, and hold-ups with the government’s immigration department, meaning that you’ll be in safe hands.
Make your immigration journey an easy one; reach out to us today!
Written by Andreas Krensel
Edited by Simon Carletti