Home Affairs to extend operating hours over the weekend ahead of elections

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The Department of Home Affairs will this weekend extend their operating hours across the country ahead of the local government elections.

The local government elections in South Africa are set to take place on Monday, 1 November.

The aim is to accommodate those who would like to collect or apply for identity documents (IDs) to enable them to vote next week.

The Department says  370 000 IDs had not been collected by the end of last week.

It has urged citizens to take advantage of the Department’s new operating hours.

Inefficiencies at Home Affairs 

Last month, authorities urged people to collect their IDs from Home Affairs offices so they can vote in the November 1st Local Government Elections.

Voters must present a valid ID and have been registered to vote – in order to cast their ballots.

While many ID’s remain uncollected at offices across the country, some people say the service from Home Affairs is not up to scratch – complaining of incompetence and inefficiency.

Thozama Khebe, whose surname was incorrectly spelled in her identity document, says life has been difficult.

“My ID is printed incorrectly.  It is Thozama Khebe but it is printed incorrectly as Thozama Khebei on my ID book and it’s been affecting me for a long time because when I apply for employment or apply for a school or varsity I have to attach an affidavit stating that my ID book is printed incorrectly. I tried going to Home Affairs with my sister, they told me that when you remove a letter or add a letter in your name or surname, you’ll have to pay a certain amount.”

The Deputy Minister of Home AFFAIRS, Njabulo Nzuza acknowledges that human error does play a part in some cases.

VIDEO | People urged to apply and collect identity documents