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Struggle to Legislate for Stricter Gun Control Measures and the South African Firearms Control Act 60 of 2000

NCJ Number
Acta Criminologica Volume: 19 Issue: 1 Dated: 2006 Pages: 42-56
A. Minnaar
Date Published
15 pages
This article traces the struggle in South Africa to legislate for stricter gun control measures which included the better late than never passage of the Firearms Control Act 60 of 2000.
The eventual passage of the Firearms Control Act 60 of 2000 in 2004, together with the regulations represents a prime piece of crime combating legislation within the wider scope of fighting the high levels of crime in South Africa. This refers to the Act’s intended controls regarding the possession of a firearm, as well as the requirements for protecting and storing such firearms more safely. The Act screens out unstable elements in society and prevents them, as well as criminals from owning a firearm by means of comprehensive background checks and competency tests. Holistically, the control measures on ownership should cut down on loopholes and diminish the supply of illegal firearms that are obtained through the theft of legally owned private firearms. All these measures have a positive effect on the overall fight against crime. In October 2000, the South African Parliament passed the Firearms Control Act. As the Act finally emerged, it was quite different from the original bill. In addition, there was a considerable delay in the actual implementation of the Act. The final implementation of the Act in 2004 contained stricter gun control measures than many similar pieces of legislation elsewhere in the world. References