As South Africa prepares to go to the polls on the 8th of May this year, the ruling ANC had a manifesto briefing at its headquarters on Sunday. At the briefing, the South African Minister of Defense, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula talked about illegal immigrants into South Africa.
In her briefing she said:
We have reached a point where we believe we should not be moaning about the number of companies (military units), the numbers of warm bodies, you have on the borderline.
We should now … look at innovative ways, look at technology. For instance, SA is a big producer of unmanned aerial vehicles and we are now looking into that.
We think that through this, we will be able to win the war against illegal migration; we will be able to win the war against porous borders.
Zimbabwe is probably the most problematic country when it comes to porous borders for South Africa. There is a very large number of Zimbabweans living in South Africa. The estimates range from 1 million to 3 million Zimbabweans in the country.
A big proportion of these Zimbabwean immigrants entered South Africa illegally or are staying there illegally. There has been some exercises to regularise the immigration status of Zimbabweans in South Africa in the past and this has helped some assimilate better in their adoptive country.
The number of Zimbabweans migrating to South Africa will continue to be high as the economic crisis in Zimbabwe remains unabated.
Drones can be more efficient and effective to deploy for manning borders. They may also also reduce corruption significantly.