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Over 100k smart ID cards issued before lockdown ready for collection

Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said while they were not processing new IDs, they were sitting with scores of IDs that were issued before the lockdown.

Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi at an inter-ministerial briefing on the coronavirus in Pretoria on 13 March 2020. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has implored more than 100,000 South Africans to collect their ID smartcards that are gathering dust at Home Affairs offices.

He said these would be critical especially for poor South Africans who might need government support during the lockdown.

Motsoaledi and his department briefed the portfolio committee on home affairs on Thursday on its annual performance plan and strategic plan.

Home affairs offices are supposed to remain open for the duration of the lockdown to carry out essential administrative tasks like the issuing of temporary IDs well as birth and death certificates.

But Minister Motsoaledi said while they were not processing new IDs, they were sitting with scores of IDs that were issued before the lockdown.

“The 104,000 IDs are the ones that worry us because they are new. We believe that they are getting social grants that the president has announced, people will be much more interested in collecting their IDs.”

The department had promised that all of its offices will be operating between 8 am and 4 pm on weekdays to render essential services.