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Ryanair drops Afrikaans test after backlash in South Africa

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GDANSK, POLAND – 2022/05/19: Ryanair planes are seen on the Lech Walesa Airport in Gdansk. (Picture by Mateusz Slodkowski/SOPA Pictures/LightRocket through Getty Pictures)

DUBLIN, June 15 (Reuters) – Ryanair RYA.I has dropped a requirement for South African passengers to show their nationality earlier than travelling by finishing a take a look at in Afrikaans, Chief Government Michael O’Leary stated after the coverage drew a backlash amongst South Africans.

The South African authorities stated final week it was bowled over by the low price service’s choice to power UK-bound vacationers holding the nation’s passport to take the take a look at, calling the transfer a “backward profiling system”. Learn full story

Afrikaans is spoken by simply 12% of the 58 million folks within the nation and infrequently related to apartheid and white minority rule.

Learn extra: South Africa ‘bowled over’ by Ryanair’s Afrikaans take a look at to show nationality

O’Leary, whose airline doesn’t function flights to and from South Africa however carries extra passengers round Europe than anybody else, described the South African authorities’s profiling accusation as “garbage” however stated the take a look at had been dropped.

“The South African authorities have acknowledged that there’s an issue with the huge variety of false or faux South African passports,” O’Leary informed a information convention in Brussels on Tuesday, citing a surge in false South African passports on a route between Turkey and Eire.

“Our staff issued a take a look at in Afrikaans of 12 easy questions like what’s the identify of the mountain outdoors Pretoria? They don’t have any issue finishing that, however we’ve we didn’t assume it was applicable both. So we now have ended the Afrikaans take a look at as a result of doesn’t make any sense.”

(Reporting by Clement Rossignol in Brussels, writing by Padraic Halpin in Dublin, Modifying by Angus MacSwan)

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