[UPDATE: Home Affairs has said the portal will finally launch on Thursday and a media briefing will be held where more details will be provided]

The Department of Home Affairs’ online Smart ID card application portal finally looks like it will be going live after several delays in launching it.

Home Affairs announced in September that it would be launching the portal to give South Africans the chance to skip long queues and make the application process much smoother.

The predicted date for the service’s launch was early December, but it was pushed back to this year and now we have a better idea of when this might be happening.

A Home Affairs official told htxt.africa that the portal will be going live sometime in April when the new financial year has started.

As with Home Affairs’ previous Smart ID launches, the portal will only be available to a select few citizens, namely those who were born between 1981 and 1985.

This is to avoid having the system being overwhelmed by an influx of applications, the department said.

Everyone else will be able to use the portal soon, the department said.

We’ll keep you posted once the portal is completely operational.