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Amb. Emmanuel Mwamba Wrote:
Eastleigh Primary School in Edenvale and their letter to foreign parents with children at their school
In the Diplomats meeting held Birchhood Hotel with Minister of Home Affairs Hon. Malusi Gigaba, I took time to raise the issue of this letter from Eastleigh Primary School situated in Edenvale, Johannesburg.
The school authorities are said to have requested that foreign parents bring original legal work or resident permits that entitles them to stay or the children will be surrendered to the Police.
Hon. Minister of Home Affairs said there was no such regulations or law compelling the school to do that and no officials from his office was directing schools to do that. He also urged parents to disregard such letters.
I am glad to learn that the school authorities have since withdrawn the letter.
This withdrawal was prompted by the Gauteng Department of Education who directed the school to retract the contents and withdraw the letter.
“As the department we support the need to comply with the laws of the country but we must exercise sympathy and empathy especially to matters relating to children” Department head Bodile said.
And Home Affairs spokesperson, Mayihlome Tshwete said it was not the department’s policy to have children arrested or for school to surrender children of immigrants to police stations for lack of proper migration papers.
UPDATE 25 February 2017:
Thanks to Anzelle Booysen for highlighting the following article. Times Live investigated the letter from Eastleigh Primary School, below is an extract and link to the full article.
Outrage over school letter threatening to bar pupils with foreign parents
While the debate prompted Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba to label it fake news‚ TimesLIVE has established the school was in fact liaising with department officials. Eastleigh Primary School from Edenvale‚ east of Johannesburg‚ summoned parents on Wednesday to verify documents after suspecting that some of them were not in order…
…TimesLIVE called the school pretending to be a parent and were told that indeed parents needed to bring in their documentation for verification purposes.
When we called back a few minutes later‚ we were told that the letter had been withdrawn.