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22. May. 2024 Businesstech

New labour rules for South Africa - what you need to know




New Labour Court and Labour Appeal Court rules, including changes to restraint of trade and holiday-time litigation, have been published in the Government Gazette.
According to Chloë Loubser and Ayanda Nkabinde from Bowmans, the new rules include major procedural changes and technical advancements. These aim to ensure that matters in the Labour Court are handled efficiently, which should help clear the challenging backlog.
Although the new rules’ effective date is yet to be published, Loubser and Nkabinde said they should be published in another Gazette in due course.
Practitioners will need to become familiar with the new technical details of the rules, with the experts highlighting some of the key provisions that employers should know about:
Holiday break
A welcome addition to the rules is the introduction of dies non (a day where no legal business may be done) over the Christmas period.
In the past, the time periods for filing court processes still occurred uninterrupted during the festive period, meaning that litigants had to remain on-call.
“The rules now exclude the period between 16 December and 15 January in the definition of ‘day’ when calculating time periods,” the experts said.
“This will no doubt come as a relief to employers, whose holiday plans will no longer be scuppered by unexpected litigation.”
Review applications
Review applications are one of the most common applications on Labour Court rolls, and the new rules state that these applications must now contain no more than a concise statement of the grounds of review.
An answering affidavit must also be concise regarding why the application is opposed.
Failure to comply with the new requirements could result in the litigant being punished by an appropriate costs order.
“Gone are the days of lengthy affidavits with a detailed chronology of the background facts. The effect of these changes is that going forward, it is best to be brief,” said the experts.
“This may, too, be beneficial for employers, as it could well bring down legal costs in preparing (and opposing) these applications.”
“The time periods for filing the record and subsequent process in the review are also now clearly stated, after years of uncertainty created by some contradictions between the rules and the Practice Manual.”
Restraint of trade
The new rules also include a procedure that a party seeking to enforce a restraint of trade through an unguent interdict must follow.
“In particular, the rules make provision for the exchange of four sets of affidavits (something that occurred regularly in practice but was not expressly catered for in the rules).”
Time periods for filing each affidavit are set, and the application will be provisionally enrolled for hearing during the week following the week in which heads of argument have been swapped.
This means an opposing application for restraint of trade could be heard just over a month after a party launched it.
In terms of urgent hearings, an application for restraint of trade will be enrolled only where the procedure set out in Rule 39 (the rule for restraint of trade) has been strictly adhered to by the applicant.
Online Court
Following their normalisation during the Covid-19 pandemic, the new rules also formally make provisions for virtual hearings on request by one or more parties or by direction by the presiding judge.
That said, the default position states that all proceedings must be conducted in open court.
The decision to go online rests with the presiding judge, who will consider the nature of the proceedings, the public interest of the proceedings and the principles of open justice.
Media Access
Media access to proceedings is also now regulated in the new rules.
“Unless the court directs otherwise, members of the press will be entitled to take still photographs and/or video footage during court activities for 15 minutes before the commencement of proceedings each day and during any adjournments, arguments where no evidence is led and judgment and/or other juridical rulings,” said the experts.
If a media representative wishes to take a record of any judicial proceedings, they will need to apply to the Court.



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13. Jun. 2024 IOL

Namibia demands reciprocal visas for their nationals

Nationals from thirty one countries will need to complete an online application form and obtain visas-on-arrival. Namibia`s Ministry of Home Affairs, Immigration, Safety and Security (MHAISS) has declared that thirty one countries, mainly from Europe, will be removed from its visa-exempt list due to the lack of reciprocal visa arrangements for Namibian citizens. While the implementation date is yet to be determined, nationals from these countries will need to complete an online application form and obtain visas-on-arrival, as stated by MHAISS. V.5428

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11. Jun. 2024 IOL

Border management dispels rumours claiming that there are flight delays at OR Tambo Airport

The Border Management Authority (BMA) has dismissed reports claiming that a transition to a biometric system at OR Tambo International Airport is causing delays for all international departures and arrivals. Commissioner at BMA, Dr Michael Masiapato said the false reports have caused unnecessary concern among travellers and stakeholders. V.5427

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10. Jun. 2024 Times Lives

Home affairs grapples with authenticity of relationships

The department needs to establish authenticity before granting spousal or relative visas A major headache for the department of home affairs in processing temporary residence visas is having to establish the authenticity of relationships claimed between individuals. V.5421

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10. Jun. 2024 Visa News

5 South African Countries Announce Plans to Introduce Single Visa to Promote Tourism

Key Takeaways • Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe are planning to introduce a single tourist visa. • This visa, similar to the Schengen one, will permit entry to all these five countries for a short period. • GCC countries will soon also launch a single visa. Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe have announced plans to simplify the movement of foreign travelers within their territories without the need to apply for separate documents. V.5422

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10. Jun. 2024 The South African

There’s a huge VISA backlog at home affairs that’s stifling SA

It’s ironic that with so many South Africans trying to leave the country, it’s a visa backlog for people trying to get INTO the country that’s stifling economic growth. According to a report from Business Tech, the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) has a visa backlog of 62 000 applications. These are for people and workers trying to get into the country to fill critical skills shortages. Now, visa agent Xpat, says the DHA are rejecting applications out of hand to simply try clear the huge visa backlog. The agent specialises in work permits for people coming to South Africa. It says individuals, HR professionals and businesses face lengthy delays and a needlessly complex application process WHAT’S THE REASON FOR THE VISA BACKLOG? Since COVID, there have been a number of changes to rectify problems within the DHA. And Xpatweb believes these administrative processes have led to mounting rejections for frivolous reasons. V.5423

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10. Jun. 2024 News24

`Habibi, come to South Africa!`: Dubai Bling`s Ebraheem confirms Forever Rose coming to SA

• Ebraheem Al Samadi, celebrated for his role on Dubai Bling, chose South Africa as his exquisite holiday destination. • He praised the country`s stunning landscapes, rich history, and the warmth of its people, declaring it an ideal vacation destination. • Al Samadi revealed plans to expand his Forever Rose café franchise to South Africa and teases what he describes as the ultimate season of Dubai Bling. `My name is Ebraheem, and this is my tongue. Beware!` The Blooming Man says in Netflix`s Dubai Bling, an iconic line that cements his place as `the son of a king, and the son of a queen`. V.5424

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10. Jun. 2024 The Guardian

High court rules Home Office acted unlawfully over visa documents

Home Office failed to provide digital proof of status to those applying for visa extensions, in new Windrush-style scandal The Home Office is facing a new Windrush-style scandal after a landmark high court ruling found that the home secretary acted unlawfully by failing to provide documents to thousands of migrants proving they are here legally. The charity Ramfel brought the legal challenge along with Cecilia Adjei, a healthcare worker and mother of two boys aged 17 and 11, who came to Britain from Ghana in 2000. V.5425

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10. Jun. 2024 City Press

SA`s population is getting older: `New report offers government blueprint for future planning`

Expert says the new report gives government an opportunity to plan ahead to meet the country’s needs. The South African population has grown by 1.1% in the past year to about 63.1 million. Of this number, 51.6 million are black Africans, followed by coloured people and the white population projected at about 5 175 608 and 4 607 554, respectively. People of Indian and Asian origin are estimated to be at 1.7 million. V.5426

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07. Jun. 2024 BusinessTech

South Africa scores massive own-goal

Woes within South Africa’s visa processes have left businesses and skilled workers in limbo, hurting investment and business activity as a result. Recently, French diplomats warned that South Africa’s strict visa requirements are driving investors away. In addition to this, Western Cape Provincial Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities, Mireille Wenger, said that a key obstacle attracting investment and expanding business is “the broken South African visa regime.” “To facilitate foreign investment, companies need to be able to easily access South Africa and those who apply for critical skills visas typically help to develop new and existing sectors, in line with international best practice or by helping to new industries through skills development,” said Wegner. Companies aiming to operate in the country must invest a minimum of R5 million and ensure at least 60% of their employees are South African. V.5419

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07. Jun. 2024 SURin english

Almost half the adult population of Spain is having difficulty making ends meet

The rising cost of living has bumped up the number of people at risk of poverty in the country to 12.7 million . `I can`t make ends meet`. This is a phrase that is heard more and more frequently among the people of Spain. Rising food prices, the supply chain crisis and the war in Ukraine have further widened the gap between the cost of living and the salary that many workers in Spain receive at the end of the month. This imbalance between income and expenditure has led to a significant loss of purchasing power, which economists estimate to be around 1,200 euros. V.5420

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06. Jun. 2024 IOL

Cape Town boy can relocate to Germany with mom

The Western Cape High Court has ruled it would be in the best interests of a 12-year-old boy to relocate to Germany following a custody battle between his divorced parents. The Western Cape High Court has ruled it would be in the best interests of a 12-year-old boy to relocate to Germany following a custody battle between his divorced parents. Judge Gayaat Salie granted the mother, an air traffic controller who accepted a job offer in Germany, the right to have her son permanently removed from Cape Town to live with her despite the father submitting a counter application. In her judgment, Judge Salie said: “The most salient words were however expressed by none other than the minor parties’ 12-year-old son, who forms the subject of this application. V.5417

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06. Jun. 2024 Times Lives

25 travellers intercepted on flights from Bangladesh, Pakistan, Ghana and Nigeria deported at OR Tambo

Thirteen Bangladeshis and three Pakistanis were found to be in possession of fake visitors’ visas, while one Bangladeshi, a Nigerian, three Pakistanis and four Ghanaians, failed to meet the entry requirements on arrival. Twenty-five foreigners were intercepted and deported by Border Management Authority (BMA) immigration officials at OR Tambo International Airport (Ortia) on Tuesday night trying to enter South Africa illegally. Thirteen Bangladeshis and three Pakistanis were found to be in possession of fake visitors’ visas, while one Bangladeshi, a Nigerian, three Pakistanis and four Ghanaians failed to meet the entry requirements on arrival. They were intercepted on flights from Bangladesh, Pakistan, Ghana and Nigeria. The BMA said they were deported back in accordance with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) regulations. V.5418

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05. Jun. 2024 Reuters

Italy`s Meloni blames organised crime for `alarming` migrant visa fraud

Criminal gangs are exploiting loopholes in Italy`s legal visa system for foreign workers to smuggle in illegal immigrants, a problem the anti-Mafia prosecutor should investigate, Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni told her cabinet on Tuesday. As part of its tough stance on immigration, Meloni`s rightist government has passed an array of measures to curb arrivals, but has also expanded legal immigration channels in response to growing labour shortages. V.5415

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05. Jun. 2024 Daily Maverick

EU visa restrictions on Ethiopians highlight further strains in migration relations

Since 29 April, the European Union (EU) has imposed temporary restrictions on Schengen short-term visas for Ethiopians. These include prohibiting multiple entry visas, longer processing times, and eliminating waivers for certain documentary requirements and visa fees. The European Commission said the action was due to a “lack of response from the Ethiopian authorities regarding readmission requests,” and shortcomings in organising “voluntary and non-voluntary return operations,” (the latter is how the EU describes deportation). The restrictions raise concerns about the efficiency and fairness of the EU’s migration policies. Ethiopia’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Nebiyu Tedla said the developments were “incompatible with acceptable diplomatic practices” and asked the EU Council to reconsider the “unfair” restrictions. V.5416

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04. Jun. 2024 Schengen News

Irish Authorities Identified 50 Individuals Without Visas Arriving from UK Last Week

Key Takeaways • 50 people without proper visas or papers have been denied entry to Ireland over the past week. • In recent weeks, several tents have been set up along Dublin’s Grand Canal due to the lack of accommodation for asylum seekers. • Irish authorities have announced regular checks in a bid to prevent any potential violation of immigration laws. Ireland’s National Police and Security Service (Garda) has detected 50 individuals without necessary visas or papers coming from the United Kingdom over the past week. The checks were conducted over a period of four days, starting from May 20, SchengenNews reports. V.5410

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04. Jun. 2024 TraveloBiz

Schengen Visa Rejection: Top 10 Countries with the Most Denied Applications

Planning a European adventure? The Schengen visa unlocks travel across 26 countries, but getting approved can be a challenge. While rejection rates dipped slightly in 2023, some countries are stricter than others. Travelling to Europe requires a Schengen visa, and some countries have higher rejection rates than others. In 2023, more than 1.6 million visa applications were denied, representing 15.8% of all requests filed. Here’s a closer look at the top 10 countries with the highest Schengen visa rejection rates. V.5411

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04. Jun. 2024 Moneyweb

Digital nomad visa a step in the right direction

South Africa has joined more than 50 countries that offer a digital nomad visa to foreign employees and individuals, giving them the opportunity and flexibility to live and work where they want. Although lauded as a step in the right direction, foreign entities and workers must carefully consider the tax and employment implications of their arrangements. It could result in complex tax obligations, making their stay financially less favourable. V.5412

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04. Jun. 2024 SA Migration

Notarial Contract Agreement - EXPLAINED

LIFE PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT Life partnerships differ from a marriage in that it is neither binding to the husband or the wife or both parties involved. Although the courts have decided whether an express or implied partnership exists, it becomes problematic in proving that such legal obligations exist. Life partnerships (cohabitations) are unique in that they have the same legal consequences as that of a marriage, but parties are not legally bound to each other. Life partnerships (cohabitations) are terminated either by the relationship failing or by death of either party. V.5414

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30. May. 2024 The Economist

Home Affairs to introduce entry visa requirement for non-reciprocating nations

The Ministry of Home Affairs, Immigration, Safety and Security (MHAISS) in a recent announcement, revealed its intention to implement an entry visa requirement for nationals hailing from countries that have not reciprocated Namibia’s favourable visa policies. Etienne Maritz, the executive director at MHAISS, outlined this decision last week, highlighting its aim to foster fair and balanced diplomatic relations. The directive, set to impact citizens from 31 nations, including Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Britain, and the United States, comes as a response to years of one-sided goodwill gestures from Namibia. V.5406

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30. May. 2024 Reuters

DR Congo names new government after months of delay

Democratic Republic of Congo has appointed a new government, spokesperson Tina Salama said in the early hours of Wednesday, ending an impasse that has mired the country in political uncertainty for months. President Felix Tshisekedi won a second term after elections in late 2023 that also handed his Sacred Union coalition a large majority in parliament. But internal jostling for jobs has delayed the formation of a new cabinet of ministers. V.5407

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Articles

13. Jun. 2024 IOL

Namibia demands reciprocal visas for their nationals

Nationals from thirty one countries will need to complete an online application form and obtain visas-on-arrival. Namibia`s Ministry of Home Affairs, Immigration, Safety and Security (MHAISS) has declared that thirty one countries, mainly from Europe, will be removed from its visa-exempt list due to the lack of reciprocal visa arrangements for Namibian citizens. While the implementation date is yet to be determined, nationals from these countries will need to complete an online application form and obtain visas-on-arrival, as stated by MHAISS. V.5428

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