Firearm amnesty a step closer

Political parties all seem to agree that the number of illegally possessed guns in circulation in South Africa must be reduced.

JOHANNESBURG - With more than a million illegal guns on the streets of South Africa, a firearm amnesty is a step closer.

It's now up to the police minister to decide on a process and to take into account recommendations made by the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on police.

Political parties all seem to agree that the number of illegally possessed guns in circulation in South Africa must be reduced.

Where some differ, is on the process and conditions. 

READ: Police seize guns in Joburg CBD raid

The DA and the Freedom Front plus say lumping those who failed to renew their licences for whatever reason, togther with those who have guns illegally, is wrong. 

This would mean those with lapsed licences must hand in their guns and fill in new application forms. 

But after more than three hours of discussions, parties appeared to have reached an agreement. 

READ: Is owning a gun a right or a privilege?

"The big difference is if you apply for the renewal you don't have to hand in your firearm. That will take the burden away from the police to ensure that the firearms are kept safe. As far as the committee is concerned, it is a step in the right direction, but it is not the solution yet," said Pieter Groenewald, Freedom Front Plus.  

Paul Oxley form Gun Owners SA is a bit sceptical.

"It's not going to be a precondition it is merely a request to the Minister. Which the minister is going to turn his back on," he said.

Oxley said unfortunately the only place to deal with this matter will be courts, once again and at great cost to taxpayers. 

Source
eNCA