In its ongoing attempts to clamp down foreign nationals illegally working in the country, the Department of Home Affairs has reportedly instituted tougher measures against mosques that employer foreigners without the appropriate paperwork. Any institution found in violation of these measures, will be handed a stiff R10 000 fine.
Speaking to VOC News, Muslim Judicial Council (MJC) deputy president, Sheikh Riad Fataar, said the ulema body had been approached by a number of local masajid, in relation to unverified foreign nationals currently under their employment.
“What has happened is that there has been a few of them whose paperwork has not been sorted out, and this has created quite a problem within the masjid, or whatever Muslim organization has employed them,” he said.
He noted several incidents where mosques had been approached by the department to report illegal immigrants. He viewed such incidents as deplorable, saying that this was not something they wished to see coming from the Muslim community.
In a bid to bring about a resolve to the issue, and to help educate masajid and Muslim organizations on the proper processes of employing foreigners, the department and MJC have jointly called a meeting scheduled for late November. The meeting would not only address the correct employment procedures, but also what paperwork would be required.
“They are prepared to sit down with us, and explain to us what are the legalities involved. They have suggested we sit down with the masjids, committees, and Muslim organizations and tell them what the law is, and how one goes about employing a person that is known to be a foreigner in SA,” he explained.
According to Fataar, the department had further stated that anyone found employing an illegal individual, would be slapped with an immediate R10 000 fine.
“We know that they can barely manage their day to day monies. They have problems with collections, so we don’t want to see things like that happen to our Masajid, and we don’t want to see it happening to our Muslim organizations,” he insisted.
The MJC called on all mosques and Muslim organizations to attend the meeting with the department, scheduled for the 29th November at 10am at the offices of the MJC. VOC (Mubeen Banderker)