On 30 January we published an article pertaining to the withdrawal of the proposed amendment bill to the FCA. This caused quite a stir, and we were accused of peddling “fake news” among other equally flattering charges. Most of this due to keeping our source within Parliament confidential, as is good practice under the circumstances.
We received the latest SAGA Snippets for the month of February via email yesterday, the contents of which confirm what we reported on:
Draft Firearms Control Act Amendment Bill Withdrawn
On 30 January 2017 news broke that the draft Firearms Control Act Amendment Bill (2015) was withdrawn by the Minister of Police and that a task team has been appointed in the Secretariat to do a comprehensive revision of the Firearms Control Act.
We do not know what this revision entails, or the extent to which it may/will differ from the previous draft Bill. We hope this means that government will be looking at all the representations submitted in January 2015 and the issues raised in the Parliamentary conference on firearms in March 2015. It is uncertain as to what consultative process will be followed and when the new Bill will be available.
The withdrawal of the Bill has no real impact on the late licence renewal process, nor on the ongoing court cases. Further, although the issue of micro dotting and ballistic testing was a major part of the bill, there were some other portions that may have
had a positive impact on firearm owners, such as the implementation of the transitional arrangements regarding the validity of green licenses, and the licensing
of percussion cap revolvers and actions.
We have also been informed that this information has circulated among other associations since first becoming available, and that the sources of the information are independent from us.
I expect the naysayers to be eating no small amount of humble pie at current.