Gauteng Premier David Makhura said advocating for tighter border security was not about unfairly targeting foreign nationals.
Makhura said the influx of undocumented migrants needed to be addressed before it became a crisis.
During his question and answer session at the provincial legislature on Tuesday, the premier denied that his administration was xenophobic.
Makhura said security at South Africa’s ports of entry must be strengthened to better manage and control the flow of immigrants.
Makhura said unlike US President Donald Trump, he was not calling for a wall to be built to keep foreign nationals out of the country.
“We don’t want to build a wall to stop [them from entering our country], we want to strengthen border security and we also have an immigration policy because we want to attract skills in our continent.”
The premier said it wasn’t xenophobic to only want documented migrants in South Africa.
He added he would be working with the South African Police Service and the Department of Home Affairs to address concerns around poor border security.
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