Home Affairs digitises millions of records

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The Department of Home Affairs in Pretoria.

JOHANNESBURG - Home Affairs and Statistics SA have teamed up to modernise the department.

Home Affairs has more than 200 million stored records it wants to digitise over the next two years.

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Stats SA has offered its help to process at least 10 million of them.

The total cost of the project is estimated to cost R200-million.

Minister Malusi Gigaba said the digitisation was an effort to consolidate records of all South Africans and make processes at the department hassle free.

“Due to the legacy of Apartheid, the democratic South Africa inherited an appalling, fragmented, manual-based system of records management. Only the records of white South Africans was properly managed and filed as opposed to records of people of other races," Gigaba said. 

He added that the failure to adequately capture the records of black South Africans led to difficulty to trace many of their birth records.