Those that have been affected by natural disasters will not be required to pay any fees to re-apply for any Identity Documents lost during natural disasters as the department has decided to waiver their fees to enable them to exercise their democratic right to vote.
The Minister said this on Thursday when he briefed the media in Cape Town on the department’s interventions and relief measures that are being rolled out to residents in areas that were affected by natural disasters that hit some parts of the country recently.
He said some residents have already expressed their concern about losing their Identity Documents, and are concerned they might not be able to vote in next week’s Local Government Elections.
“The Department of Home Affairs today waived all the fees applicable for those victims affected by the fires and floods so that they could be provided with enabling documents that were lost and destroyed.
“This means that all those people who were victims of fire and floods will be able to re-apply for their new Identity Documents without having to pay the applicable fees of R140,” he said.
The Minister extended his sympathy to all citizens in different parts of the country who fell victim to flooding, fire and storms.
He said the department will continue to do all in its power to assist them in whatever way possible for them to return to their normal lives.
Ten thousand affected by flash floods
The Minister said work was being done to support most of the victims, adding that he had already visited the Masiphumelele community in the Western Cape to view some houses that were affected by the flooding.
He said residents were being provided with humanitarian assistance, adding that Home Affairs officials have also been dispatched to the area to assist affected residents to apply for identity documents.
“In the Western Cape, almost 10 000 people have been affected by flooding in KwaLanga and Phillippi. Reports we received are that 50 structures and 280 people were affected by the flooding.
“At the NY63 hostel in Gugulethu, three homes were destroyed by fire with more than 55 people displaced.
“It was still unclear what caused the fire.”
He commended non-profit organisations who have offered humanitarian relief in the form of blankets, hot meals, vanity packs and baby packs to flood victims and encouraged others to do the same.
He said Home Affairs mobile units will be deployed to affected areas over the weekend and next week.
The Minister said in Thembisa, five Home Affairs officials have been deployed to the Kempton Park office to assist affected people with the help of Community Development Works.
A disaster management team has been deployed to profile the area.
The Minister said in KwaZulu-Natal, Home Affairs was extending assistance to those affected by floods.
He said six people unfortunately lost their lives during the floods.
“We have deployed 10 Home Affairs officials to assist with two mobile trucks and four vehicles.
“As a caring department and government, we will do all in our power to assist the affected citizens. Asylum seekers and refugees and all other affected people who are in the country,” he said.