Refugees In South Africa Essay

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THE PLIGHT OF ASYLUM SEEKERS AND REFUGEES IN SOUTH AFRICA
South Africa has been hosting millions of refugees and asylum seekers from across Africa and Asia. The state has taken steps in giving protection to these vulnerable sections of society. One of the important steps it has taken is the explicit and implicit inclusion of refugee and asylum seekers’ rights in the Constitution. The Refugee Act (1998) and Constitutional Court decisions also give human rights protection to refugees and asylum seekers in South Africa.
South Africa attracts economic migrants because it is the second biggest economy of Africa and it is considered to offer better economic opportunities for economic migrants. The country is also rated as one of the best few countries
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It is, however, aimed at showing the vulnerable situation of some section of refugees and asylum seekers who find it difficult to find jobs, and as a result to rent houses.
It is equally aimed at showing to the government and stakeholders that refugees and asylum seekers who can afford renting houses are in many cases denied of doing so. Housing agencies discriminate against these vulnerable groups based on their nationality status. This happens regardless of the fact that a person is a recognised refugee who has adequate means to pay for housing. The question remains, why are refugees and asylum seekers who are allowed to stay in the country refused to get housing even when they have adequate means to pay for the housing?
The denial to rent houses in their own names has many repercussions in the exercise of other rights. For example, proof of residence is a precondition to open bank accounts so that refugees and asylum seekers, who are denied of renting houses in their own names, cannot fulfil this requirement. Even more, most banks refuse to open bank accounts to refugees and asylum seekers. Refugees who work and earn money are left with no option than keeping money with them instead of saving in banks. This makes them more prone to burglary, theft and physical
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