South African citizenship: An opportunity for Namibians
| Johannes Kgotso Tiba

South African citizenship: An opportunity for Namibians

Read Johannes Tiba's latest blog to learn more about how Namibian citizens can look to claim South African citizenship. 

Read Johannes Tiba's latest blog to learn more about how Namibian citizens can look to claim South African citizenship. 

At the beginning of 1990, Southern Africa witnessed winds of change that resulted in the independence of Namibia, the former South West Africa from South Africa. Namibia gained independence from South Africa on March 21, 1990 and the birth of Namibia also paved the way for the end of minority rule in South Africa four years later.

One of the changes made by the new Namibian administration was the passing of Namibian Citizenship Act, signed into law on August 20, 1990, which prohibited dual citizenship. As a result, many South African citizens who lived in the former South West Africa decided to become Namibians and consequently renounced their South African citizenship. With the passing of time, the Namibian High Court held that section 26, which prohibited dual citizenship, may not be constitutionally applied to Namibian citizens by birth or descent (see Thloro v Minister of Home Affairs 2008 (1) NR 97 (HC) and Le Roux v Minister of Home Affairs and Immigration & Others 2011 (2) NR 606 (HC)).

Do you have a claim to South African citizenship? 

 As a result of this development, many Namibians find that they may have a claim to South African citizenship by virtue of their parents, who may have returned to South Africa to resume their citizenship. Others are also now finding that their business, educational and other income-generating initiatives require them to be on the ground in South Africa for long periods of time, which can be restricted to 90 days per year under the current visa waiver agreement.

Regaining South African citizenship would provide eligible individuals with, among others, right to live, work and even establish businesses in South Africa.  It would also make it easier to travel in and out of South Africa with no restrictions attached to port of entry visas.

Fragomen can help

Fragomen Africa can assist Namibian citizens with claim to South African citizenship with services ranging from foreign birth registration to resumption of South African citizenship. Other services such as the procurement of birth, death and marriage certificates can also be provided to interested parties. 

Fragomen can also assist clients with applications for general work visas, critical skills visas, medical visas and even study visas. We can also provide support to potential clients in making applications to be readmitted to South Africa after being declared ineligible to re-enter the country after over-staying one’s visit. In most cases, the circumstances that caused one to overstay may range from loss of travel document or even being involved in an accident that resulted in long hospitalisation while on holiday.

Contact us

For more information on Fragomen’s Namibia service offering and experience, please contact Johannes Tiba or Toni Gillson. 

This blog was published on 28 April 2021, and due to the circumstances, there are frequent changes. To keep up to date with all the latest updates on global immigration, please visit our dedicated COVID-19 site, subscribe to our alerts and follow us on LinkedIn, twitter, Facebook and Instagram