S. Africa to crack down on illegal hiring foreigners

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, November 20, 2013
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The South African government warned on Tuesday that it will take a hard-line towards employers violating laws governing hiring of foreign nationals.

Stiff penalties lie ahead for employers hiring foreign nationals who do not have the requisite work permits, said Sam Morotoba, acting Director-General of the Department of Labor.

He was speaking at a meeting of the select committee on labor and public enterprises in Cape Town.

Morotoba was giving a presentation to the committee on the objects of the Employment Services Bill ahead of its tabling at the National Council of Provinces on Thursday.

The bill seeks to contribute to the government's objectives of more jobs, decent work and sustainable livelihoods, Morotoba said.

Employers, Morotoba said, should be reminded that they cannot hire anyone without the necessary documents from the Department of Home Affairs as the bill seeks to protect the employment conditions and opportunities for South African citizens and permanent residents.

Employers should know that if they are caught, they will face heavy fines, Morotoba said without elaboration.

Under the bill which reinforces the Immigration Act, the minister of labor is empowered to make regulations setting out the procedures that must be undertaken before employing foreign nationals and in appropriate circumstances, require the preparation of skills transfer plans for positions being occupied by non-citizens.

The minister is also empowered to make regulations for the reporting and registration of existing or new vacancies by employers with the Public Employment Services. The bill also prohibits an employer from requiring foreign national to perform work not authorized in terms of the work visa.

The bill further provides for the registration of private employment agencies. Such agencies are, however, prohibited from charging work seekers any fees for services rendered except in the case of specific categories. Tens of thousands of foreigners from neighboring countries work in South Africa, many of them illegally. They compete with the locals for scarce jobs. This not only worsens unemployment but also leads to increased attacks on foreigners in the country. Endi

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