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Home Affairs Dept to review permanent residency status of foreign pastors

Home Affairs Minister Siyabonga Cwele says his department is considering a review of their status as permanent residents.

Alleluia Ministries International church leader Alph Lukau. Picture: @AlleluiaMinistriesInternationalOfficialPage via Facebook.

CAPE TOWN – The Department of Home Affairs is set to take a hard look at high-flying pastors who’ve moved to South Africa to run lucrative ministries.

Home Affairs Minister Siyabonga Cwele says his department is considering a review of their status as permanent residents.

So-called “miracle” pastors are also facing closer scrutiny from the South African Revenue Service, while the African National Congress has called for rogue religious leaders to be investigated by the CRL Commission.

Cwele told Parliament’s home affairs committee that becoming a permanent resident of South Africa involves certain conditions that must be met.

“There are many of these things in the public [eye], like these priests who come from foreign countries to do work here. We’ve asked the department to review their status. Because if you come here, you say you’re coming to run a factory - there’s no factory called a church.”

The minister says it’s not about being against people from other countries.

“Quite clearly, we are not xenophobic but if you come to our country under certain conditions you must stick to those conditions.”

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