Thirty-one Home Affairs officials were suspended for alleged involvement in the fraudulent registration of births of foreign nationals, Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said on Thursday.

“The fraudulent registration of births of foreigners constitutes a serious threat to national security, undermines the stability of our democracy and costs the state millions of rands meant for reconstruction and development,” she said.

“These fraudulent registrations of births of foreigners lead to the false registration of foreigners on the South African Population Register thus leading to the issuance of fraudulent IDs, duplication of existing IDs and fraudulent passports,” said Ms Dlamini-Zuma.

Most of the fraudulent registrations were for Pakistani nationals. By issuing fraudulent documents, the officials were denying the needy and the poor basic services because they were allowing the fraudsters to access social grants meant for South Africans, she said.

The 31 officials were suspended in KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, Eastern Cape and Limpopo. In another blitz last month 28 officials were suspended for the alleged fraudulent registrations of marriages and deaths.

Source: (www.pretorianews.co.za 20091211)

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