Parliament announced (or is about to announce) another so-called firearm amnesty. I do not actually know what they will call it once it is officially gazetted. It doesn’t really matter, anyway. The timing of this abortive, unnecessary, and ill-advised campaign is particularly suspect. Our Minister of Police tried more than once last year to shove one through Parly without adhering to the required protocols and procedures. Fortunately, the Portfolio Committee on Policing rebuffed these efforts and spared us all the disastrous implications thereof. This time, however, it appears that our illustrious Minister of Police, Mister Fearfokkol himself (according to his Twitter handle), has finally discovered how Parliamentary due process worked, and succeeded in getting approval for his gun amnesty.
The initiative will run from 1 June to 30 November. Although the dates will probably change before it is officially gazetted.
Now, I have extensively written about why firearm amnesties are a terrible idea (here and here). I don’t see the point in again unpacking all the numbers and relevant arguments. You are welcome (and encouraged) to read the provided articles for that background information. So, I am going to keep this as short and to the point as possible.
Firearm amnesties are for criminals.
If you are not a criminal who intends to surrender an unlawfully owned firearm, then you should not participate in this amnesty. If you own a firearm of which the licence has expired: there was recently a very expensive Constitutional Court case, of which judgement will be handed down within the next few months, pertaining to your problem. Until then your expired licence is completely valid as per the interim court order issued by Judge Tolmay in the North Gauteng High Court last year. Therefore this amnesty does not apply to you: it only applies to criminals.
On that note, let me put it bluntly that the least safe place you can surrender your lawfully owned firearm to, is the South African Police Service. The SAPS have a woeful track record as custodians not only of their own guns, but also those that are stored in evidence lockers and SAP13 stores. Unless you are perfectly comfortable of enabling a Colonel Chris Prinsloo Version 2.0 to sell your surrendered firearm to criminals, and can sleep soundly at night knowing your gun is in the custody of an organisation complicit in repeatedly arming criminals, then you should not voluntarily surrender your firearm to the SAPS under any circumstances.
Your legally owned firearm is safest while remaining in your custody.
Hence in closing: whatever media campaign is launched, please ignore the existence of this nonsensical effort by the authorities to coerce law-abiding gun owners to surrender their lawful property. If you are not a criminal, the amnesty doesn’t apply to you.
Written by Gideon Joubert
Gideon is owner and editor of Paratus
5 years ago
My “expired” firearm is currently in SAPS custody. They would not accept my new applications until I handed it in for safekeeping. May I apply for a new license in that Amnesty period? Or is the amnesty only to hand over firearms?
5 years ago
The SAPS are in contravention of the law. I suggest getting legal representation and claiming your property back ASAP.
paratus | New firearm amnesty about to be announced: ignore it |•
5 years ago
[…] http://paratus.info/2018/02/15/firearm-amnesty/ […]
5 years ago
This is simply to try and get around the problem of expired licenses.
South Africa has a prison population of 161 000, in prisons which can accommodate 120 000.
How many people have expired licenses is estimated to be well over 200 000. With each one up for a prison term of 15 years, enforcing the FCA is impossible. This is like e-tolls
Further, no compensation will be payable for people’s property.
If all expired licensees hand themselves in it will collapse the system a la the Pass Laws. In fact, you can draw a direct correlation between the Pass Laws, E-tolls and re-licensing for what happens to a system nobody wants or needs
5 years ago
I have been reading and following your many ramblings on the Firearm issue we lawful law abiding citizens face from our Government. Your Web Site, and the others that you copy the article to, is preaching to the already converted firearm owners, so to continue preaching the same ideals to the same people who are already on your side, is aimless and nonsensical
Now if you / we. the legal Gun Owners, and the various dealers, and security companies, training acadameys, collectors and so on, in fact the total firearm community etc, were to get together and pool their resources, the time and money might be better spent on taking out a full page advertisement in a National Newspaper eg:- The Sunday Times where our argument and point of view would be exposed to a far larger audience.
There are law abiding citizens out there who have real issues about their firearms and who need to be advised correctly.
Don’t misunderstand me, I agree that those SAPS DFO’s who are holding legal licensed firearms are way out of line in terms of Judge Tolmay’s recent Order of Court, and they should be given a National Directive by the National Commissioner and / or Minister of Police to return those firearms until such time as the Constitutional Court returns with their Ruling on the matter.
I also agree that the last place that you want to hand your firearm in for safekeeping is the SAPS.
But we need to start boxing cleverer and smarter if we want to win.
So lets all get our thinking caps on and lets work together for a favourable outcome!!!
5 years ago
You don’t need a advert. Adverts are for organisation who have no followers or members willing to contribute because they see no hope of success. You need less than a 100 people willing to write the media and and organisation or two willing to make public announcements that are supported by those 100 willing people. Both SAFF and SALGO kept this countries media, GFSA and government in check with less than 20 overworked, unthanked and totally unappreciated workers who litteraly burnt themselves out both mentally and physically fighting the FCA and sell out firearm organisations. Ask Paul Oxley to give you some idea of what that acheived. What broke that effort was not GFSA or government but our firearm organisations as they preached compliance and idiotic “common sense” that you cannot fight government. Collaboration and appeasement. Most are no different even today.
Beware these organisations do not want to win this fight.