Home affairs 'war on queues' off to a slow start
The department of home affairs campaign to make its branches more efficient is off to a slow start.
Labelled the War on Queues‚ the campaign was launched in April this year to improve the waiting time at home affairs offices. But there have been some glitches.
Home Affairs minister Malusi Gigaba told journalists on Monday morning there were signs of progress in some areas.
Gigaba claimed that on average a Home Affairs office currently takes 25 to 30 minutes to fully process a client.
"Currently‚ we have noted that even those that have applied online are still not prioritised when they get to our offices; they still stand in queues [the same] as those doing walk-in applications‚" he said.
"The biggest contributor to system downtime is unavailability of power in many offices‚ where uninterrupted power supply and the generator failed to switch [on]."
He said a full skills audit for all office managers was "at an advanced stage" and provincial leaders were implementing specific interventions to deal with queues in their areas.
Regarding five offices identified for immediate action - Soweto‚ Alexandra‚ East London‚ Pietermaritzburg and Umngeni - Gigaba said a full assessment was conducted and implementation of the recommendations have started in Alexandra and Soweto.
"We are closely monitoring the performance of these interventions to ensure success‚" he said.