Query: Has the Ministry of Home Affairs introduced any changes to visa requirements in March this year, compelling South African citizens to acquire business visas at the Namibian High Commission in Pretoria before travelling to Namibia for business activities?
Response: “The Ministry has not introduced any changes to the visa requirements at all. The Ministry has and is still being guided by the Immigration Control Act; Act No. 7 of 1993 which was enacted to regulate and control the entry of persons into, and their residence in Namibia. The application of this Act is to all foreign nationals except where it is stated otherwise by law. There has never been a change in such law or policy that only targets South African business persons.”
Query: What does the Immigration Control Act say about the requirements of visas and permits in Namibia?
Response: “According to Section 24 (b) (i) of the Immigration Control Act, Act No. 7 of 1993 provides that: No person shall enter or reside in Namibia with a view to temporary residence therein, unless in the case of any person who intends to enter or reside in Namibia for the purpose of employment or conducting a business or carrying on a profession or occupation in Namibia, such person is in possession of an employment permit issued to him or her in terms of Section 27.”
Query: What are the requirements with regard to South Africans or any other business people coming to Namibia for different business related matters?
Response: “It should be made clear that, business persons coming to Namibia to work at their subsidiary companies, for example, giving training to local staff, conducting audits of their companies, volunteer work of any kind etc. are required to apply for employment permit/work visas in terms of Section 27 of the Immigration Control Act regardless of whether they are citizens of countries which are exempted. The requirements for visas and permits in Namibia are mandated under the Immigration Control Act, Act No. 7 of 1993. Basic requirements: Visa application, invitation letter/ motivation letter, copy of the applicant’s passport.”
Query: With SADC making progress in deepening regional economic integration, how soon will it be before no visas will be required?
Response: “The issue of visa relaxation and economic integration is a major responsibility of SADC member countries and it is a gradual process of which the current visa exemption which Namibia has is just the beginning.”
• Sakeus Sacky Kadhikwa, Public Relations Officer, Ministry of Home Affairs And Immigration, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org