To get into a South African university isnâ€
I am a Mozambican who has been living and studying in South Africa for many years. I completed part of primary school and high school here, as well as obtaining a degree at Wits University.
For those of us who come from another country, getting accepted into these institutions isnâ€
By the way, this is how Home Affairs minister, Malusi Gigaba, responded to someone on Twitter when they asked about study permits for international students. Awkward.
â€” Sibongile Mafu (@sboshmafu) January 27, 2016
Among the documents that you need for your application for a study permit is a letter of acceptance from your academic institution or university. These letters are only issued at the end of the year, which is problematic as some of the other documents such as police clearance certificates can take weeks or even months to get. This process generally takes about 4-6 weeks, so if you received a letter of acceptance in November, even if you apply immediately for police clearance, you can only apply for a study permit in January… and classes begin at the start of February.
If you have studied in South Africa for more than 12 months (Iâ€
The list doesnâ€
(1) A letter providing proof of residence (like placement in a university residence);
(2) A Mozambican Police Clearance, which costs around 500-700 Metical or R190-R270. It must also have been translated by an official translator into English;
(3) Proof of health insurance from a South African insurer;
(4) A medical certificate saying that you are in good health;
(5) A radiological certificate (an x-ray) showing that you donâ€
(6) A letter from your parents saying that they will financially support you while youâ€
(7) An unabridged birth certificate.
But wait, there’s more! Once you finally get all these documents, only then you can go to the South African embassy in your country to apply for your permit. In Maputoâ€
When the doors finally open, everyone rushes to get inside; sometimes you need to fight with people to keep your place in line. Once you make it inside, you still have to wait for the civil servant to come to their window – which can take another 30 minutes. Finally, after youâ€
The civil servants normally have blank, unfriendly expressions, and seem unhappy to help you. Once youâ€
You go home and compile the missing papers, on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Going back again the next day, you hope that by some miracle you have everything. But it turns out that your South African police clearance still hasnâ€
So you go there the next day trying to submit – again – and they finally accept your submission. After waiting five days for your study permit you finally pack your bags and head to South Africa to register for university, thinking that the nightmare is finally over.
But. It. Isnâ€
Finally, after weeks and sometimes months of jumping through hoops, you are finally registered and ready to study! Even if your nerves are frazzled and your stress levels through the roof, you thank your lucky stars, knowing you are one of the lucky ones who made it through the unending, unfriendly, bureaucratic maze.