Wright in the wrong - SA
Johannesburg - Britain's Sunday Mirror journalist Simon Wright is an "undesirable person" in South Africa, despite his lawyer's claims to the contrary, the department of home affairs said on Tuesday.
"As we said in our statement on Sunday, he is classified as an undesirable person according to Section 30 and 31 of the Immigration Act," said departmental spokesperson Ronnie Mamoepa.
Earlier, Wright's lawyer, William Booth claimed that his client did not fall within the category of a prohibited or an undesirable person, as set out in the act.
He accused the home affairs department and national police commissioner General Bheki Cele of misinforming the media and the public.
"We are of the opinion that Mr Wright does not fall within the category of a prohibited person or an undesirable person," said Booth.
However, Mamoepa said Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma had officially declared Wright an undesirable person and had ordered him to leave South Africa.
"What this means is that he cannot acquire a visa in South Africa. He will not be admitted to the country and will not be eligible for temporary or permanent resident status," Mamoepa said.