Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi

PHOTO: Frennie Shivambu, Gallo Images

  • The Ministry of Internal Affairs will announce 2,000 vacancies on Friday as part of a project to digitize civil documents.
  • The three-year project aims to digitize 350 million documents dating back to 1895.
  • The department is recruiting graduates for the project in Records Management, Information Technology, Records Information and Records Management.

Home Affairs Minister Aaron Matsoaledi says the department will launch a three-year, R2.4-billion project to digitize its records.

About 10,000 graduates will be employed in the process, Motsoaledi said on Thursday.

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During his State of the Nation Address in February, President Cyril Ramaphosa said 10,000 unemployed graduates would be recruited to assist Home Affairs in collecting civil status records.

Motsoaledi said it would cost the department R2.4 billion over three years.

“Ninety percent of the money goes to pay for another scholarship, and the other 10% goes to buy equipment.”

Graduates will help the department digitize 350 million birth, death, marriage and amendment records dating back to 1895, he said.

Motsoaledi said most of the records were in Gauteng, the North West and the Western Cape.

He said:

Digitization of domestic affairs is not a new thing. It is already happening and being done [Statistics South Africa]. They are able to digitize only five million documents per year. We decided that this would not help us, because every day they are growing.

He said progress in the current effort has been slow because the department’s records have increased each year. Birth registration, for example, increased by a million a year.

“Quite often, South Africans complain bitterly about the delays they experience when they apply for full birth certificates, full marriage certificates, amendments and corrections to their biographical information.

“This is because in order to complete all these applications, Home Affairs officials have to manually search for the original documents among these 350 million manual records. Once these records are digitized, Home Affairs officials will have access to them at the click of a button.”

“Part [reason for] long queues at the internal affairs department means that one person has to come to the office again and again. If they are converted to digital format, it will be an easy job,” Motsoaledi added.

Motsoaledi said the recruitment of graduates in Records Management, Information Technology and Document Information and Records Management will begin on Friday. Graduates will receive three-year employment contracts with a salary of between 5,000 and 14,250 rand per month.

At the first stage, it is planned to recruit 2,000 unemployed young people. Vacancies will be announced on Friday and work will begin on November 1.

General view of internal departments of internal affairs

A general view of the interior of the Home Office in Newtown, Johannesburg.

Gallo Images OJ Koloti, Gallo Images

At the second stage, 4,000 graduates will be sought. Recruitment for these positions will begin in October and successful candidates will begin work in January 2023.

In December, another 4,000 vacancies will be announced, which will start working in April 2023. Graduates can apply on the Home Affairs and Labor Department websites. They can also visit labor departments.

Matsoaledi said 60% of the recruits would be women.

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