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1 million tourists enter SA

2010-07-04 21:17

Johannesburg - The number of foreign visitors entering South Africa during the FIFA World Cup period has now risen to one million, the home affairs department said on Sunday.

"This figure is expected to rise further as the World Cup enters the semi-finals and the final phases of the tournament," said spokesperson Ronnie Mamoepa in a statement.

The Movement Control System (MCS), which was launched by Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma and linked to Sars and law enforcement agencies, had enabled the country to monitor movements of persons entering the country, particularly during the period leading up to and during the various phases of the World Cup.

In that regard, the MCS recorded a total number of foreigners visiting the country from June 1 to July 1 as 1 020 321 compared to 819 495 for the same period in 2009. This represented an increase of 200 826 or 25%.

"During the same period South Africa's Advanced Passenger Processing System witnessed a total of 43 undesirables being prohibited from boarding airlines abroad to enter South Africa."

The home affairs airline liaison officers in various international airports abroad have denied entry into South Africa to 188 persons due to possession of fraudulent documents, including visas, permits, travel documents and stamps, as well as failure to meet immigration requirements.

Mamoepa said the MCS had further recorded Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Swaziland, Botswana, Malalwi and Zambia as among the top visitors in the country during the period. They were followed by the United Kingdom, US, Germany, Australia, Brazil and Mexico.

Meanwhile, the World Cup quarter final clash between Argentina and Germany drew a record 300 000 fans to Cape Town's inner city on Saturday, authorities said.

The Cape Town Stadium was filled to capacity with 64 100 spectators while 42 000 people passed through the fan area on the Grand Parade during the day, the city's communications department said.

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