Visas required for Canada
As from 11 September 2012 citizens of Namibia, Botswana, and Swaziland are required to apply for a visa to travel to Canada. The announcement was made on Wednesday by Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney.
“We continue to welcome genuine visitors to Canada,” said Minister Kenney. “However, these visa requirements will give us a greater ability to manage the flow of people into Canada.”
This change will allow Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) and its partners to screen more travellers for security risks prior to their arrival in Canada. This will help significantly reduce the risk that individuals engaged in organised crime or the trafficking of persons could gain entry to Canada.
In the cases of Namibia, Botswana and Swaziland, human trafficking, especially of minors, and fraudulent documents are significant concerns.
“These requirements will better protect the safety of Canadians by preventing foreign criminals from coming to Canada in the first place,” said Minister Kenney.
Canada regularly reviews its visa requirements towards other countries. Countries are aware that they have a responsibility to satisfy certain conditions to receive a visa exemption.
This visa policy change means that nationals from Namibia, Botswana and Swaziland who want to travel to Canada will first need to apply for a visitor visa and meet the requirements to receive one.
It is up to applicants to satisfy visa officers that their visit to Canada is temporary and that they will not overstay their authorised stay; have enough money to cover their stay; are in good health; do not have a criminal record; and are not a security risk to Canadians. Applications are processed by the visa office in Pretoria.