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Advice in the time of COVID-19

Do you need legal or psycho-social assistance during the national COVID-19 lockdown and ongoing pandemic. While many organisations physical offices are closed some of us are available over phone and email. See the info-graphic below for the details of some of CoRMSA’s members who you can contact.





[PRESS STATEMENT] COVID-19 CORMSA call for Non-Exclusionary Precautionary Treatment Measures

 Immediate release: 18 March 2020 

COVID-19: CoRMSA calls for Non-Exclusionary Precautionary Treatment Measures. 

The Consortium for Refugees and Migrants in South Africa (CoRMSA) is deeply concerned with the potential impact and spread of COVID-19 in South Africa, the region, and the rest of the world. Following the announcement made by the President of South Africa on the 15th March 2020 with regard to the current status of COVID-19 cases in South Africa, CoRMSA calls on all persons to adhere to the precautionary measures to be followed by all persons within our borders in order to minimise the spread of the virus amongst all who live within the Republic. CoRMSA’s mandate is to promote and protect the human rights of asylum seekers, refugees and migrants in South Africa. It is in line with this mandate that CoRMSA calls for non-exclusionary, precautionary and treatment measures to be implemented in a non-discriminatory manner, with regards to COVID-19. 

As CoRMSA, we wish to highlight that all individuals living within the Republic and the rest of the world, irrespective of nationality or documentation status (in particular asylum seekers, refugees and migrants), should and must be guaranteed that they will receive necessary attention equal to that provided to citizens when it comes to addressing COVID-19. The COVID-19 virus does not separate or discriminate based on one’s nationality, race, language or colour. Neither should the public health response. 

CoRMSA further calls upon the Minister of Home Affairs, Minister of Health and Office of the President including the South African Human Right Commission to play a critical role of monitoring and overseeing that the human rights of those who are most vulnerable, such as refugees, asylum seekers, and migrants, are not violated when it comes to responding to COVID-19 within the Republic. 

Human lives are at stake and now is not the time for the South African government to practice and implement any form of exclusionary or discriminatory measures. This is particularly relevant if the SA Government is to address the threat and spread of COVID-19 effectively. South Africa has a history of basic service exclusion when it comes to accessing basic lifesaving services, such as basic health care service, for migrants, asylum seekers and refugees, and CoRMSA wishes to reiterate that now is the time to ensure that those types of exclusions are not repeated. This should and must apply at hospitals, clinics, and Refugee Reception Offices when it comes to permits extension and renewals. 

CoRMSA applauds the President of South Africa on the South Africa’s swift and informative response. We encourage all our stakeholders and beneficiaries to follow the precautionary measures outlined by the President, and to keep informed through the correct and reliable information channels. 

Now is the time for all those in South Africa, citizens and foreign nationals alike, to be true to the values in South Africa’s Bill of Rights and Constitution, and to the value of uBuntu. We are all connected, and our humanity is intricately linked to the humanity of others. Now is the time to celebrate that, and live it, and ensure that while we exercise physical distancing we also exercise social solidarity. 

For more information on COVID-19, please see the SA Government’s official COVID-19 website 

For further information whatsapp “hi” to the Official SA Government COVID-19 support service: 060 012 3456. 

This press statement was endorsed by CoRMSA Members: Follow the link- 


PDF Link here:

CoRMSA: Terms of Reference for project administrator support system development (M & E)

For developing and setting up project support and administrative system for CoRMSA.

1. Background information:

The Consortium for Refugees and Migrants in South Africa (CoRMSA) is a national network of organisations working with asylum seekers, refugees and international migrants. CoRMSA currently has 25 member organisations across the country. Our member organisations include legal practitioners, community based refugee and migrant led organisations, advice offices, academic institutions, social service providers amongst others. The CoRMSA model is such that through our members and partners, collectively we cover work at local, provincial, national, regional and global levels to ensure that the daily challenges faced by foreign nationals are addressed through policy and practices that fosters social cohesion. CoRMSA’s main objectives and mission is the promotion and protection of the human rights of all foreign nationals in ways that promote the well-being of all in South Africa and the region. CoRMSA has over fifteen years of experience working on migration engaging in policy advocacy and lobbying; coordination and network building; capacity building; rights awareness and information sharing.

CoRMSA in partnership with Kindernothilfe (KNH) German Government (BMZ) funded project will be implementing “Children in Migration and their communities are empowered to claim their human rights” project. This is 41 months’ project is targeting Children and Youth in Migration and their communities to see that they are empowered to be able to claim their human rights so that they can enjoy inclusive policies and have access to basic services. Part of this project is to develop and setting up project support and administrative system for CoRMSA for effective project implementation and documenting project deliverables and outcomes.

2. Objective of the project support and administrative system.  

The overall objective of the develop the Children in Migration project support system in line with the planned project programme of activities. This support system will be able to assist CoRMSA to monitor and evaluate project implementation phases.  To ensure effective implementation and follow –up, ongoing evaluation must be built into the implementation, based on predetermined project plan and progress for each learning initiative.

3. Expected Results and Deliverables

Linked and specifically for the project staff implementers (CoRMSA) shall be able to help CoRMSA to draw and utilise the developed project support system administration on the following information:

  • Project programme support system administration is developed to capture and assist CoRMSA on the following:
  • Monitoring and Evaluation framework and its characteristics for the project
  • Project M&E to include aims and objectives of the programme, methodologies to use to obtain the data, the planned interventions to be implemented, the critical assumptions underlying the intervention and the anticipated critical hindrances that might have an effect on the project etc.
  • Suggest strategies to the Project Management for improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the project by identifying bottlenecks in completing project activities and developing plans to minimize or eliminate such bottlenecks.

4. Execution method.

In accordance with KNH and CoRMSA policies, consultant will have required to develop the said project support administrative system in consultation with CoRMSA staff members. The consultant thereof, will have to design an online (soft copy) monitoring and evaluation tools and forms for the project. Also to include Project, Resource, Financial, Quality, Risk and Reporting plans for CoRMSA to use during the project implementation phase.

5. The Prospective Applicant

Prospective applicant could be one person or a team of two-person maximum:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Health Social sciences, Statistics or related courses is desired.
  •  M&E Training from a recognised institution is mandatory.
  • Professional training in Project Management will be an added advantage
  • At least 4 years’ relevant experience in specific M&E related work experience in the NGO field.
  • Ability to analyze and utilize program development gaps to designing project
  • Familiarity with principals and contemporary approaches to M&E using both quantitative and qualitative methods.
  • Experience in strategic planning and performance measurement, including indicator selection, target setting, reporting, database management, and developing M&E and performance monitoring plans.
  • Knowledge of the major evaluation methodologies (e.g. qualitative, quantitative, mixed-method, and impact) and data collection and analysis methodologies.
  • Have a valid Identity document or permit

6. Proposal and contract

Proposals should include only following documents:

  • a general outline and ideas for the development of monitoring and evaluation system development and its packaging.
  • examples of previous M&E project developed.
  • Current Curriculum Vitae
  • Certified copy of identity document/permit, dispensation.
  • Detailed budget (traveling and accommodation logistics) will be organised by CORMSA). The contract will be based on the agreed scope, work plan and the agreed budget for the study.

Please send the proposals by the 28 February 2019 

CoRMSA Contact person:
Ms. Gloria Makxeta
Tel: 011 403 7560
Fax: 011 403 7559

Press Statement: International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women

For Immediate Release:                                                                                                               25 November 2019.

“CoRMSA Says No to violence against Women and Children”.

2019 Global Theme. #orangetheworld:  Uniting to end violence against women and girls on the move.

November 25this commemorated around the world as the International Day for Elimination of Violence against Women. Through resolution 54/134 passed in 1999, the United Nations General Assembly designated 25 November as a day to bring public awareness and collaborative intervention towards eliminating violence against women and girls. This resolution provides an opportunity to raise awareness and call attention to the urgent need to end violence against women and girls.   The 25thNovember also marks the start of 16 days of activism against Gender Based Violence leading up to International Human Rights Day –10 December.

The 2019 theme for International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women is ‘Orange the World: Generation Equality Stands Against Rape’.  This theme would not have come at better time when violence against women and girls has become one of the most widespread violations of human rights in South Africa and rest of the world. The 2013 World Health Organisations global study indicates that, 35 per cent of women worldwide have experienced either physical and/or sexual violence.  Similarly, asylum seekers, refugees, migrant women and girls face specific challenges and protection risks in transit as well as in host communities; these include physical harm and injury, exploitation and gender-based violence.  Available evidence indicates that, in South Africa, most migrant women cited gender-based or sexual violence as one of their top threats (Institute for Security Studies Report -2018).

Violence against all women and girls regardless of their nationality or documentation statuses has received international and local attention with statistics of gender based violence (GBV) in South Africa rapidly increasing, most recently resulting in local protests of Total Shutdown Movement in Sandton, Johannesburg and around the country. These campaigns make public the violence which is often silenced and stigmatized and provides space for all women to stand in solidarity and share their experiences of violence and theneed for effective legislative changes and enforcement of these to address the widespread issues.

On this day, the Consortium for Refugees and Migrants in South Africa (CoRMSA), recognises the plight of women and girls on the move. It is significant to note that asylum seeker, refugees and migrant women and girls experience violence as intersectional and multi-layered. Women in migration are particularly vulnerable during their transit to seek protection or a better life as they endure many forms of human rights abuses, both emotional and physical.  Reported incidences often include sexual violence, labour exploitation, xenophobia and discrimination. Women in migration face further violence and silencing, as they will often not report incidences of violence for fear of experiencing further victimisation and deportation as a result of their nationality and documentation status.

In commemorating this day, (CoRMSA) joins the rest of the world in calling for unity and action against violence against women and girls andmore concerted efforts to stop violence against women and girls on the move.  CoRMSA also calls for those involved in gender based violence to be held accountable before the court of law.  In this regard, CoRMSA applauds President Cyril Ramaphosa for unveiling an emergency action plan to combat violence against women and children, including his directive to the National Assembly and the National Council to provinces to prioritize amendments to various pieces of laws to ensure stiff and harsher sentences to perpetrators of violence against women and children. Take action and protect Women and children with No harm.

For inquiries or more information please contact: Thifulufheli Sinthumule (CoRMSA) 71 358 0059 or Muluti Phiri (CoRMSA) or Abigail Dawson (CoRMSA) +27748515683

Press Statement: Universal Childrens Day 2019

For Immediate Release:                                                                                                                                                           

20 November 2019.

Universal Children’s Day:  Upholding the rights of children in migration

Universal Children’s day is celebrated annually on 20thNovember.  This day was established in 1954 to promote international togetherness, rights awareness among children worldwide, and improving children’s welfare.  November 20th is an important day as it is also a date in 1959 when the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child. It is also the date in 1989 when the UN General assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child. The convention sets out a number of children’s rights such as the right to be protected from violence and discrimination and the right to life, health and education.

This day aims to bring awareness and solidarity with children from around the world who have experienced violence in form of abuse, exploitation, discrimination based on their nationality, race, ethnicity, language and documentation status.

Despite South Africa having progressive policies, legislation and being a signatory to a number of international conventions, there are challenges with regards to the implementation of such legislation. For instance, the South African Constitution guarantees access to basic education – Chapter 2, Section 29 of the Constitution states that, “Everyone has the right to a basic education, including adult basic education”.  It is clear that both international and domestic policies guarantee rights to all children irrespective of nationality or documentation status.

On this day, CoRMSA brings attention to the plight of children in migration in South Africa. Children in migration are particularly vulnerable and prone to discrimination with their lives fully dependent on the acquisition of documentation such as birth certificates, asylum permits, refugee status or study permits.  Children in migration continue to face discrimination and numerous barriers in accessing basic services, such as enabling documentation, health and education.   Documentation for children in migration is fundamental for children’s protection and in accessing critical basic services.   It is their constitutional and fundamental right to have access to these services.

While Universal Children’s Day encourages each one of us to advocate, promote and protect children’s rights in order to build a better world for children, such, should not be limited to this day alone but a continuous struggle for justice. CoRMSA calls upon government, civil society organisations, faith-based organisations, communities/leaders and all relevant authorities to take an important stance in ensuring that the rights of children in migration and children in general are respected, promoted and upheld.

For inquiries or more information please contact: Thifulufheli Sinthumule (CoRMSA) 71 358 0059  or Muluti Phiri (CoRMSA) 711500113 or Abigail Dawson (CoRMSA) +27748515683

Press Statement: International Day For Tolerance

Press Statement:

For Immediate Release:                                                                                 16thNovember 2019.

International Day for Tolerance: Upholding the Human Rights of Refugees, Asylum Seekers and Migrants. 

International Day for Tolerance was established by the United Nations in 1996 to be a reminder of the principles that inspired the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the UN on 10 December 1948.  This day is aimed at spreading a value – tolerance – which is central to universal human rights and fundamental freedoms.

This day is significant in the current era characterised byrising xenophobia, widespread violence, growing intolerances, injustice and human rights violations, largely characterized by a fundamental disregard for human rights, against refugees, asylum seekers and migrants.

South Africa’s history is marked by institutionalized and societal intolerances. Under apartheid, immense discrimination and violence were instituted against black South Africans.  The apartheid legacy continues into contemporary South Africa.  Non- nationals fleeing poverty, violence and seeking out a better life in South Africa are the victims of everyday marginalization and discrimination.  The recent looting of non-nationals’ shops, massive destruction of property and killings in different parts of the country reminded us yet again, of the deep-rooted attitudes of prejudice and xenophobia against refugees, asylum seekers and migrants living in South Africa.

On this day, The Consortium for Refugees and Migrants in South Africa (CoRMSA) is calling on all government leaders, relevant authorities and South African citizens to desist from negative perceptions and attitudes towards refugees, asylum seekers and migrants.  Instead, welcome and aim to strengthen social cohesion between host communities and refugees, asylum seekers and migrants, ensuring that their fundamental rights as laid out in Chapter 2 of the Constitution are realized and make available efficient services to provide them legal stay in South Africa.

It is therefore, important that we all commit ourselves to effectively promote and protect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all migrants regardless of their documentation status and work towards the inclusion and recognition of the value that refugees, asylum seekers and migrants bring to South Africa.


For inquiries or more information please contact: Thifulufheli Sinthumule (CoRMSA) 71 358 0059  or Muluti Phiri (CoRMSA) or Abigail Dawson (CoRMSA)


What’s Happening This Week

30th September- 4th October 2019

This week CoRMSA and its member organisations are organizing and apart of various activities and events in forwarding our mandate to promote and protect the human rights of refugees, migrants and asylum seekers in South Africa. These include:

01 October 2019

Abigail Dawson and Muluti Phiri are attending an urgent task team meeting regarding xenophobia hosted by Foundation For Human Rights.

02 October 2019

Muluti Phiri , advocacy officer in collaboration with Lawyers For Human Rights (LHR) will be hosting a community dialogue in Orange Farm discussing matters relating to xenophobia, migration and documentation.

CoRMSA is a member of the reference team for joint research project by African Centre For Migration and Society  (ACMS) and International Organisation for Migration (IOM) looking at Migration and Disability. Abigail Dawson will be attending the inception meeting.

03 October 2019

CoRMSA will be attending the Ruth First Memorial Lecture at the University of Witswaterand where Achille Mbembe will deliver the lecture titled:  Migrancy and Populism: Is our politics normalising the language of xenophobia

04 October 2019

The CoRMSA Team will be attending and participating at Open Society Foundations South Africa (OSF-SA) meeting on xenophobic violence



Heritage Day Press Statement: Embracing asylum seekers, refugees and migrants

For Immediate Release:                                                                                                                              24 September 2019.

Heritage Day Press Statement: Embracing asylum seekers, refugees and migrants

The month of September is commemorated and celebrated as the National Heritage Month.                 24th September in South Africa is National Heritage day, where South Africans celebrate their culture and the  diversity of beliefs and traditions in a wider context of a nation that belongs to all who live in it.

Heritage day should aim to unite South African communities regardless of nationality  through cultural diversity in order to promotepeace, social cohesion, reconciliation and economic development,free from prejudice, hatred, xenophobia and other intolerances. This day is meant for all the people living in the country including Asylum Seekers, Refugees and Migrants. It offers a unique opportunity for all people to celebrate, embrace  and learn from a diversity.

This year’s heritage month is being celebrated  under the theme, “Celebrating South Africa’s literary classics in the year of indigenous languages”.   Unfortunately, for asylum seekers , refugees and  migrants there is little or indeed no cause tojoin in thecelebrations.   What was witnessed in the recent past weeks was inconceivable! The Consortium for Refugees and Migrants in South Africa(CoRMSA),  strongly condemns the  xenophobic attacks  on non-nationals and the subsequent looting and destruction of mainly foreign owned shops by locals  in different parts of the country.  This behavior fueled by generalized myths and negative perceptions about  migrants, saw loss of many innocent lives  and displacement of  numerous non-nationals among them vulnerable women and children.

We pose a question of Ubuntu and ask all south Africans to celebrate this Heritage Day by  embracing social cohesion with refugees, asylum seekers and migrants. This is what Ubuntu is meant to be!

South Africa’s rich and diverse heritage, including a  progressive and respected Constitution can manage to find a lasting solution to end all forms of discrimination based on people’s origins. With concerted political will, we believe that these xenophobic violence and attacks and massive destruction of property,  can be prevented and lasting solutions implemented.

CoRMSA urges all people living in South Africa, including asylum seekers, refugees and migrants  to boldly celebrate our diverse  cultural heritage in unity.

For inquiries or more information please contact: Thifulufheli Sinthumule (CoRMSA) 71 358 0059  or Muluti Phiri (CoRMSA) +27711500113 or Abigail Dawson (CoRMSA)

Letter to President Ramaphosa to Intervene in Violence

 To: President Matamela Cyril Ramphosa 

Re: Request for your immediate political intervention on recent lootings, xenophobia and displacement of foreign nationals in the country. 

I write on behalf of the Consortium for Refugees and Migrants in South Africa (CoRMSA). CoRMSA is a national network of twenty-five (25) organisations whose main objectives and mission are the promotion and protection of the human rights of asylum seekers, refugees and other international migrants in ways that promote the well-being of all in South Africa and the region. Our mandate is to promote and protect the rights of asylum seekers, refugees (persons of concern) and other international migrants in South Africa. This mandate is achieved by advocating for the rights of asylum seekers, refugees and international migrants through lobbying, litigation, capacity building, and strengthening partnerships between refugee and migrant service providers to facilitate an improved and coordinated service delivery among member organisations and partners. 

We aim to foster social cohesion through public awareness campaigns and other strategies and facilitate the integration of asylum seekers, refugees, and international migrants into the South African society. 

As CoRMSA, we are deeply concerned about the recent and recurring spate of xenophobia against foreign nationals and lootings of foreign owned shops. These have lead to the loss of lives, displacement of persons of concern, and significant socio-economic impacts related to property damage. These acts represent a fundamental violation of human rights and disrespect for basic human dignity. We are concerned that if such acts are not addressed, they will further deepen and victimise vulnerable groups such as asylum seekers, refugees and migrants living in South Africa. 

In the aftermath of your successful appointment as the President of the Democratic Republic of South Africa, we look to you to lead this country to greater heights as a safe space for all, free from hatred, discrimination and related intolerance based on one’s nationality. 

We are therefore writing to request your strong and immediate political intervention through the power vested on you as the President of the Democratic Republic of South Africa to publicly condemn these acts of violence, xenophobic attacks, and looting that are underway in Gauteng Province and other parts of the country. CoRMSA urges you to encourage the law enforcement agencies to restore law and order within our communities and to hold those involved in these acts accountable. We ask you to condemn and request all authorities and leaders to refrain from making unverified and unsubstantiated public statements and utterances that promote hatred and divisions amongst South African citizens and foreign nationals. 

CoRMSA believes that social cohesion is not only for South African citizens but for all who live within the republic regardless of their nationality status. We request your office to activate stakeholder and community engagements to promote communities of peace and diversity. CORMSA stands ready to aid your office in this task. 

Please do not hesitate to contact us should you require further information or clarification on this matter. We believe that our request will receive the necessary attention and intervention it deserves from your office. 

Yours Sincerely. 

Thifulufheli Sinthumule (Mr). Executive Director