South Africa-Migration-Bushiri

S/Africa: Immigration official dismissed over Bushiri residence permit

APA-Pretoria (South Africa)

South Africa’s Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has welcomed the dismissal of a senior official in his office for illegally granting permanent residence permits to Malawi’s self-appointed prophet Shepherd Bushiri and his family, APA has learnt.

Chief Permitting Director Ronney Marhule was found guilty by two labour courts of misconduct after recommending the permits for Bushiri, his wife Mary and their two children in 2016, the ministry of home affairs said on Monday. 

An internal disciplinary process found that Marhule was grossly dishonest and negligent in making the recommendation as the Bushiris did not qualify for the permits.

Motsoaledi said that the ruling of the disciplinary hearings against Marhule took the ministry closer to bringing an end to irregular practices and decisions by officials in his office.

"The chief director was found guilty on two counts relating to dishonesty and negligence at the conclusion of a lengthy disciplinary hearing which lasted for almost a year," the minister said.

According to Motsoaledi, Marhule tried to stop the disciplinary process against him at the Labour Court and the Labour Appeal Court but was unsuccessful.

“The outcome of this disciplinary hearing is taking us closer to ensuring that we bring to an end irregular practices and decisions by Ministry of Home Affairs officials within the system,” Motsoaledi said.

He added: “We are cracking down on all forms of irregularities wherever we find them at the Ministry of Home Affairs.”

The Bushiris skipped bail last year and have now set up base in their home country, where they are fighting extradition in the courts to return to South Africa to face justice.

Meanwhile, hundreds of his worshippers are still flocking from South Africa to Malawi to attend his church services where he preaches the gospel of prosperity.

NM/jn/APA

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