This week Lt. Gen Moeketsi David Sempe confirmed, among other things, that firearm licensing is now allowed and that police stations must take renewal applications for firearm licenses and competency certificates.
This directive also confirms the Minister of Police’s letter of 22 April 2020 to the civil rights organization AfriForum’s legal team that firearm owners whose 90-day period to renew their firearms license was influenced by level 5 of the seclusion period.
The directive further confirms that firearm owners can now make use of the amnesty period ending 31 May 2020. Finally, the directive also confirms that the Minister of Police is strongly considering approaching Parliament for an extension of the said amnesty period.
This follows after AfriForum’s legal team sent a letter to Police Minister Bheki Cele and National Police Commissioner Khehla Sithole on 25 March 2020. In the letter, AfriForum expressed concern, among other things, that the ability of firearm owners to renew their firearm licenses on time due to the state of restriction.
“The directive formally confirms that law-abiding firearm owners can now renew their licenses in the prescribed manner and will not be complied with due to the restriction period,” says Marnus Kamfer, AfriForum’s Community Safety and Risk Manager. “AfriForum will monitor whether the stations comply with the directive and will continue to fight to protect the rights of legitimate, responsible firearm owners.”