The Executive Mayor of Mopani District Municipality, Limpopo, Nkakareng Rakgoale, urges members of the public to ignore false reports about the green barcoded ID book.
Rakgoale was speaking during a fact-finding mission at Home Affairs office in Tzaneen, following an outcry from members of the public about poor services and a battle with long queues, Letaba Herald reports.
According to reports circulating on social media and purported to be from the Department of Home Affairs, the lifespan of the green bar-coded ID book comes to an end on March 31.
READ MORE: Green ID book still legit
Further, the reports suggest that the R140 paid for Smart ID card application fee will be increased to R320 and the social grants for those who do not have smart ID cards will be terminated.
Rakgoale said these mischievous messages which are driving members of the public in great numbers to Home Affairs offices to apply for smart ID cards in panic are false and should be ignored, as they do not come from the Department of Home Affairs.
Acting district manager of the Department of Home Affairs, Thandi Khuvutlu, said these false reports were putting their offices under extreme pressure unduly, as people rush there in their numbers to get smart ID cards.
Khuvutlu said people that responding with panic affects the Home Affairs systems negatively, thus making it very difficult for the offices to deliver services as expected.
Khuvutlu said the department is working on getting the systems fully automated, and also developing a mobile solution to support the rollout of smart ID cards.
The spokesperson for the Department of Home Affairs, Thabo Mokgola, also dismissed the claims about the termination date for using the old greenbarcoded ID books.
“We wish to make it clear that the green barcoded ID book remains a legal form of identification and will continue to be until such time that the Live Capture System is rolled out to all Home Affairs offices to enable South Africans to apply for Smart ID cards at their nearest offices,” said Mokgola.
He said the department has developed a plan to systematically phase out the green ID book and ultimately consolidate the restoration, common citizenship, identity and dignity to South Africans.
“To this end, we call on South Africans to apply for Smart ID cards at any of the 180 offices that are equipped with the Live Capture System.
“In addition, the Department has established a partnership with FNB, Standard Bank, Nedbank and ABSA to create an online portal where clients can lodge their application without visiting a Home Affairs office,” he added.
To apply, visit ehome.dha.gov.za/echannel