Kenya, South Africa establish a borderless relationship

Most countries have established rules and regulations for entering their borders, some more rigid than others. However, very recently, South Africa and Kenya decided to tear down such barriers by establishing a bilateral visa free agreement.

The visa-free entry deal would commence from January 2023. Applicants will get a maximum of 90 days annually.

As of this moment, Kenyans looking to travel to South Africa have to pay up to $40 (£35), and show proof of “sufficient” funds, while waiting for as long as three weeks for a 90-day South African visa. The only travellers allowed a free pass are those staying less than 30, however, they are still required to pay a processing fee of about $40.

Kenyan president, William Ruto and his South African counterpart Cyril Ramaphosa, have agreed to revise this visa restriction entirely, creating a new visa-free regime.

Prior to this new agreement, Kenya had been progressive towards South Africans with its travel laws as South Africans do not require pre-departure visas to travel to Kenya.

The president of Kenya lauded the new deal, stating; “I express appreciation for the progress that we have made in the long awaited visa-free regime.”

The two presidents also put a return policy in place, should the new immigration laws be breached. This initiative follows the plan both nations had established in unveiling a Pan- African airline between Kenya Airways and South African Airways.

“We both occupy strategic points on the continent and there is a great need for a strategic partnership to be struck,” President Ramaphosa said.