Motsoaledi directed to consider amending naturalisation rules to comply with law

This formed part of the remedial action set down in a report, which made adverse findings against former minister Malusi Gigaba regarding the naturalisation of the Guptas, albeit that it cleared him of abusing his power.

FILE: Minister of Home Affairs Aaron Motsoaledi. Picture: GCIS

JOHANNESBURG - The Public Protector said the Home Affairs minister must consider amending naturalisation regulations to ensure compliance and effective administration of the law.

This formed part of the remedial action set down in a report, which made adverse findings against former minister Malusi Gigaba regarding the naturalisation of the Guptas, albeit that it cleared him of abusing his power.

With Gigaba no longer a member of the Cabinet, the onus now lies with Minister Aaron Motsoaledi to ensure that some of the lapses in governance identified by Busisiwe Mkhwebane were corrected.

The Public Protector directed Motsoaledi to consider incorporating a descriptive framework for the “exceptional circumstances” which necessitates the application for early naturalisation.

These, the report reads, should not encroach on the minister’s discretion but allow for guidelines to facilitate a fair and uniform approach when dealing with early naturalisation.

The report found that Gigaba was well within his right to exercise his discretion as provided for in law when approving the naturalisation, even though the information which had been given to him by officials to motivate this decision contained inaccuracies.

In this regard, the report directed that responsible officials in the department should consider verifying the accuracy of the reasons provided in motivations, while the minister should consider submitting all supporting documents to Parliament when handing over the names of all naturalised individuals.

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