Parliament’s Home Affairs Committee is planning to conduct its own oversight visit at the Lindela Repatriation Centre.
Committee Chairperson Bongani Bongo suggested this when he closed the virtual meeting between the Committee and the Department on Thursday.
Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi is not convinced that the centre is inhabitable.
He says this would have been picked up by human rights bodies like the South African Human Rights Committee, which is stationed at the centre.
Bongo believes that the committee should see for itself.
He says, “We must devise a strategy of an oversight. We will consult with the leadership of Parliament on how can we get to do an oversight at Lindela so that some of these questions that we have asked, you are able to ask them from a point of view of having seen the place.”
In the video below, Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi says 94 Lesotho nationals have been deported from Lindela.
37 detainees escape from Lindela
At least 37 people are believed to have escaped from the Lindela Repatriation Centre outside Krugersdorp in Gauteng on Sunday evening.
Lindela is the largest facility for the holding of undocumented migrants awaiting determination of their legal status in South Africa.
Recently, the centre has been in the news after reports of overcrowding emerged. Home Affairs Minister dismissed reports as fake.
A video believed to have been filmed over the weekend shows foreign nationals inside an overcrowded facility.
It was posted on social media by an organisation calling itself the Black Power Civil Rights Movement, raising concerns over lack of social distancing.
Motsoaledi says regulations are being adhered to at the centre.
He says, “The Department of Health has just been there recently. They actually screened all of them and even sent those who are suspicious for testing, all of them were found to be negative and they were provided with sanitisers and masks.”
In the video below, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi addresses the issue of the escapees:
INFOGRAPHIC: Level 4 lockdown: