Craig Smith, pre-eminent South African immigration lawyer, argued successfully against the Department of Home Affairs (“the DHA”) in the case of Mtemachani v Director-General of Home Affairs and Another (3970/2021) [2023] ZAWCHC 318 (29 November 2023) in the Western Cape Division.

Craig Smith appeared before Judge Pillay and presented his case seeking the DHA to reverse its decision to refuse Mr Mtemachani’s critical skills work visa despite being a computer science graduate at UCT and the holder of extensive IT experience in the IT sector.

Craig Smith argued before Judge Pillay, with the DHA in opposition, that the immigration laws are premised on the Preamble of the Immigration Act, as amended, as a starting point whereby the DHA must apply the law expeditiously against simplified procedures that are predictable, objective and reasonable.

The court concurred with Craig Smith and held in favour of Mr. Mtemachani with costs.

Craig Smith states that, “if the DHA makes a decision with reasons that are clearly non-sensical or irrelevant (or no reasons) to what the law or facts require, then such decision should be challenged as of right by every applicant.

If you are unsure of whether your refusal is adequate in law, or on the facts, contact us for an assessment before you simply accept such decision as correct in law or on the facts.


Cape Town

Craig Smith

Contact Details
(021) 418 3810

Physical Address
Immigration Chambers
10 Pepper Street,
Suite 8
Cape Town, 8001

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