Migration Dynamics in Africa: Expectations and Lived Experiences of Immigrants in South Africa.
Author / Authors:
Journal of Asian and African Studies.
International migration has continued to increase over the years. As people relocate to seek opportunities, their hopes and aspirations for a better life become a driving force. The extent to which their expectations are achieved is not documented in South Africa. This paper examines the expectations versus experiences of international immigrants in South Africa using Cameroonian and Democratic Republic of Congo immigrants residing in Cape Town. A qualitative approach with snowball sampling selected key informants from Cameroonian and Congolese nationalities in Cape Town. Results suggest that most immigrants did not meet their expectations for migrating, due to migration policy limitations of the host country exempting them from opportunities. The results align with both the Capability Approach theory and Lee’s model of migration. Most of the immigrants showed despondency but do not prefer the option of returning to their home country. This is because they have not attained their goals for migration. The paper recommends that policy discussion between the South African government and stakeholders has become imperative to obtain an informed perspective on the dynamics of migration.