All Press Releases

19 May 2009
In a strongly worded judgment, the North Gauteng High Court has ordered the permanent closure of the detention facility for undocumented foreign nationals on the military grounds near Musina, commonly known as "SMG". In February 2009, LHR launched an urgent High Court application seeking an order for the closure of the facility due to a number of factors, including the extreme...
14 May 2009
On 10 May 2009, the day the Department of Home Affairs welcomed its new Minister, Home Affairs illegally deported an asylum seeker to the Democratic Republic of Congo-returning him to face the same persecution and grave risk that caused him to flee his home and seek refuge in South Africa. The deportation is a blatant violation of South Africa's domestic and international legal obligations,...
13 May 2009
On 8 May 2009, the Supreme Court of Appeal upheld the appeal of the Mkhondeni community in Pietermaritzburg and thereby prevented their eviction. The court further ordered that the Msunduzi Municipality to be joined to future proceedings. The Municipality was also directed to file a report by the 30 June 2009, on what steps it has taken to provide alternative land or emergency accommodation...
9 May 2009
One year after residents of Alexandra turned on their neigbours unleashing a chain of violence across the country, foreigners in South Africa face  continued threats of violence. little has been done by the South African authorities to address the root causes of the violence and as a result the threats of violence against foreigners remain real.
6 May 2009
Lawyers for Human Rights welcomes the announcement by the Department of Home Affairs that a new temporary 90 day temporary visa has been introduced for migrants from Zimbabwe. This visa regime will encourage Zimbabweans to travel by regular means between SA and Zimbabwe. In recent years travel between SA and Zimbabwe has been difficult due to the strict visa conditions which South Africa...
21 April 2009
Despite the announcement by the Department of Home Affairs of a special dispensation for Zimbabwean nationals in South Africa, SAPS officers continue to arrest and detain hundreds of Zimbabweans in the Musina area.  In recognition of the humanitarian crisis in Zimbabwe, the Department of Home Affairs has finally heeded the call for a special exemption permit for Zimbabwean nationals who often...
15 April 2009
Lawyers for Human Rights has been shocked by the recent threats of Ms Lulu Xingwana, the Minister of Land Affairs and her apparent "use it or lose it" land distribution policy.  LHR is representing Ms Veronica Moos, a beneficiary of the land redistribution policy, who has recently seen her occupation of her farm personally violated by the Minister.  It appears that the Minister has used...
31 March 2009
Lawyers for Human Rights welcomes the judgment of the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) in Ulde v Minister of Home Affairs which was delivered today, 31 March 2009. The SCA unanimously upheld the appeal against the decision of the Johannesburg High Court to dismiss an application by a Pakistani immigrant to declare his detention unlawful.Lawyers for Human Rights, acting as amicus curiae in this...
23 March 2009
Lawyers for Human Rights will approach the High Court in Pretoria tomorrow, Tuesday 24 March 2009, for an urgent order declaring the immigration detention centre located on the military grounds in Musina, unlawful.  Every month, approximately 15 000 Zimbabwean nationals are deported from a detention centre located on a military base outside of the town of Musina close to the Zimbabwean border...
18 March 2009
The Forced Migration Studies Programme (FMSP) at the University of Witwatersrand held a closed door roundtable discussion with the Department of Home Affairs officials on Friday 13 March 2009. The discussion centered around recommendations contained in a newly released FMSP study assessing refugee policy and service delivery at the country's five permanent refugee reception offices. The report,...