The South African Department of Home Affairs has announced that it will introduce new ‘child passports’ for minors aged 15 and below in 2017.
Currently, passports are available to citizens who are aged 16 and older, and are valid for 10 years, while for minors 15 years old or younger, a passport is issued but is non-renewable and should be accompanied by an unabridged birth certificate.
The new child passport for minors would include the details of both the child’s parents, doing away with the need for an unabridged birth certificate when travelling. This is an effort to make travel to and from South Africa easier, while also curbing issues of child trafficking.
“Now we have designed a new passport. At the time that the parents apply for the child passport, the details of both parents will already be in the passport,” explained the department’s director-general Mkuseli Apleni.
On October 28, Apleni announced that unabridged birth certificates for minors will now be streamlined by changing the name of the certificate from “unabridged birth certificate” to “birth certificate”. Details of both the minor’s parents will still be included, as has been done since the launch of the unabridged birth certificate in 2014.