In a letter dated 2015-01-22, Mr GG Hlatshwayo, on behalf of the Director General, “correctly denied” the Guptas South African citizenship stating that they “did not comply with the requirement in terms of section 5(1)(b) of the South African Act 2010”, the EFF said in a statement on Monday.
Hlatshwayo indicated that the Guptas “did not have five years of physical residence in the Republic of South Africa”, the statement says.
The application for naturalisation was therefore unsuccessful and the Guptas were advised to make another attempt on December 23, 2015, “provided [they] do not exceed 90 days outside South Africa for every year in the five years preceding [their] new application and comply with requirements as prescribed in Citizenship Act, Act 17 of 2010 as amended”.
A few months later, Gigaba, in a letter dated 2015-05-30, wrote to the Guptas, granting them, what he terms, “early naturalisation”.
Gigaba states that “after careful consideration of the matter, I have decided by the powers vested in me under section 5(9)(a) of the South African Citizenship Amendment Act, 2010 (Act no 17 of 2010), to wave the residential requirements in regards to your application for naturalisation and grant you early naturalisation”.
The EFF is taking the matter to court.
Department of Home Affairs spokesperson David Hlabane said the department would have to check on the claim before commenting.
”We need to go back to our files with our team to check and verify the information that you require, and then we will be able to respond.”