The Indian cricket team has arrived in South Africa ahead of their Test series against the Proteas.
But getting to these shores hasn’t been a smooth ride for all. Opener Shikhar Dhawan is the latest to fall victim to South Africa’s unabridged birth certificate policy.
Dhawan and his family travelled on Emirates via Dubai, but his wife and two children were stopped from boarding one of their flights because they did not have the correct documents.
Why nobody told Dhawan – either at departure point or prior to departure – that these documents are needed nobody knows.
Especially, you know, since the policy has already caused so much fuss.
Dhawan took to Twitter to vent his frustration.
Unabridged birth certificates for minors travelling to South Africa
The law came into effect in June 2015. It requires all minors under the age of 18 years are travelling to South Africa to provide an unabridged birth certificate, showing the particulars of both parents, in addition to their passport when exiting and entering South African ports of entry.
Why do minors need unabridged birth certificates when travelling to South Africa?
It was inacted to curb human trafficking. According to the Department of Home Affairs, 30 000 minors are trafficked through South African borders every year. 50% of these minors are under the age of 14.
It is the responsibility of passengers to ensure their children have the correct documentation or risk being denied boarding. The new law is being enforced by airlines and immigration officials across the board (land, sea and air). Although airlines and travel agents are doing everything to keep passengers informed, ultimately it is passengers’ responsibility to know what is required of them. In all cases an Unabridged Birth Certificate is required for minors departing and arriving in South Africa … they are not allowed to travel without it.
In cases where the Unabridged Birth Certificate is in a language other than English, it must be accompanied by a sworn translation issued by a competent authority in the country concerned.