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The Impact of the Proposed National Identity System on Transgender, Gender Diverse, and Intersex People in South Africa
Developed by Gender Dynamix with support from Privacy International

In November 2020, the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) announced that it would be developing a new Identity Management System, as part of what they termed the Official ID Management Policy (OIMP), and that this would also address issues of legal gender recognition for transgender, intersex, and gender diverse persons.

Accessing Legal Gender Recognition


Gender DynamiX’s Executive Director, Liberty Matthyse, shares her experiences around acces-sing legal gender recognition in South Africa, and provides an outline of the recommendations made to government to improve policy and legislation for transgender, gender diverse and intersex persons.

Keeping the Promise of Dignity and Freedom for All!

South Africa is one of the very few countries in Africa that offers protection to trans and gender diverse persons. However, the current model of legal gender recognition, through the Alteration of Sex Description and Sex Status Act 49 of 2003, is highly pathologizing and incompatible with the country’s priority of achieving social equity for all who live in it. 

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Keeping the Promise of Dignity and Freedom for All: A Position Paper on Legal Gender Recognition in South Africa

This Position Paper was developed and published by Gender DynamiX (GDX) and the Legal Resources Centre (LRC). It outlines the organisations’ position on the right to legal gender recognition in South Africa. The pa­per advances a model of legal gender recognition based on self-determination enabling individuals in South Africa to have their gender legally recognised and reflected on identity documents based on a simple process of self-declaration. The model advanced here would include options for non-binary genders, as well as an option to omit gender markers completely in identity documents and in the identification number issued at birth registration.

Home Affairs considers scrapping male and female ID numbers

Gender Dynamix recently spoke to GroundUp about the Department of Home Affairs’ (DHA) Draft Official Identity Management Policy.


We welcome the human rights-approach which the DHA has taken in this Draft Policy, bringing their processes more in alignment with the values and rights enshrined in the Constitution, particularly the proposed mechanisms that speak to non-discrimination and privacy.


However, the policy still requires some work we will be making our formal submission to the DHA in due course.

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