M75k for Lesotho citizenship

M75k for Lesotho citizenship

MASERU-FOREIGNERS applying for Lesotho citizenship will now have to fork out a staggering M75 000, up from M40 000.
This is after the Senate passed the Lesotho Citizenship (Amendment of Schedule) Regulations 2019.

Senators who spoke after the new law was passed said the move was meant to “weed out useless foreigners” who apply for Lesotho citizenship.
The Senators unanimously agreed that it was about time that prices for Lesotho citizenship were bumped up.

Speaking in the House yesterday, former home affairs minister, Tsukutlane Au, said the amount was as low as M2 000 in recent years and was then pushed to M5 000.

Au said after an application is granted, a foreigner will then pay a fee to be a citizen of Lesotho.
“It was M30 000 back then but the ministry asked for M40 000 later,” Au said.

He said the committee accepted the increase of M70 000 on issuing of citizenship and now the overall total is M75 000.
He also said for children the fee will now be M50 000.
He said a married couple will now pay M90 000 total to be citizens of Lesotho.

Au called on the Ministry of Home Affairs to research how other countries were handling similar processes.
“We have to find the best foreigners,” he said.

He also recommended the freshening up of the Citizens Act as the current one is outdated. The Citizens Act was enacted in 1971.
He also said they expect new citizens without criminal offences.
Au’s motion was seconded by Chieftainess Kholu Moshoeshoe who said people given citizenship should go through a screening process so that Lesotho does not take “useless foreign citizens”.

Chief Peete Lesaoana Peete said in the Senate Legislation Committee they recently discussed a case of a Ugandan couple that died leaving their children alone.

“The children were born in Lesotho and later their parents died. The children do not know Uganda and their native language but were left alone by parents in Lesotho,” Chief Peete said.
“We are saying the ministry should look into such cases,” he said.
Chief Seeiso Bereng Seeiso said “Lesotho citizenship should not be prostituted”.

“People should know we have a right to refuse,” Chief Seeiso said.
“The essence of revenue generation should not be a priority on the matter,” he said, proposing stricter conditions for a foreigner to qualify to be a Mosotho.

“We should accept people with the element of skills.”

NKheli Liphoto

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