What is the change? The Department of Home Affairs has carried out immigration raids on businesses in Cape Town in search of employers who are violating immigration laws.

What does the change mean? Twenty-five foreign workers were arrested and a manager at a restaurant that was raided will be charged with violating the Immigration Act for employing foreign workers illegally.

  • Implementation time frame: Ongoing.
  • Who is affected: All businesses in South Africa that employ foreign workers.
  • Business impact: Businesses should be aware of the increased enforcement activity around suspected immigration violations and have protocols in place for receiving inspectors.
  • Next steps: Companies are encouraged to review their records and ensure that they are in compliance with all immigration laws.

Background: The Department of Home Affairs confirmed that the raids took place in Cape Town on May 9 in response to complaints they received from members of the public regarding suspected illegal working. The department also said it expects to arrest more people as the investigations continue.

BAL Analysis: South African employers are reminded that immigration and labor authorities may conduct random, unannounced visits to worksites at any time and that employing foreign workers who are not work authorized is an offense.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact

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