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National Veld and Forest Fire Bill Withdrawn

November 9, 2017

Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries

The National Veld and Forest Fire Amendment Bill has been withdrawn from parliament.

The bill was tabled in November 2016.

Earlier this year, the agriculture, forestry and fisheries department re-briefed parliament on the bill.

The agriculture, forestry and fisheries committee had asked the department to return with an improved briefing document as certain typographical errors in the original briefing caused confusion.

The bill aimed to:

• Amend the National Veld and Forest Fire Act so as to insert new and to provide clarity on certain definitions;
• Provide for the facilitation of the formation of fire protection associations by a municipality or a traditional council;
• Compel a municipality, state-owned enterprise, public entities or other organ of state which owns land to join the fire protection associations;
• Extend the powers of entry, search, seizure and arrest to peace officers and traditional leaders; and
• Amend the title of the Act to National Veldfire Act.

The committee called for comment on the bill in July 2017.