Parliament has passed the Correctional Services Amendment Bill and sent it to president Ramaphosa for assent.
The national assembly passed the bill and sent it to the national council of provinces for concurrence in March 2021.
The bill was tabled in parliament in November 2020.
Its explanatory summary was published in Government Gazette 43931.
The bill aims to amend the Correctional Services Act, 1998, so as to:
• amend a certain definition;
• insert, delete and amend certain provisions related to parole of offenders; and
• provide for matters connected therewith.
According to the explanatory summary, the bill aims to amend the act so as to amend the definition of “Minister” to align it with the portfolio(s) assigned by the president from time to time.
The bill also aims to amend the act by inserting, deleting and amending certain provisions related to the placement of sentenced offenders under day parole, parole and correctional supervision, the criteria used to determine the minimum detention period to be served before becoming eligible for consideration for placement on day parole, parole and correctional supervision and providing for matters connected therewith.
The amendments flow from the Constitutional Court Phaahla judgement that found certain sections of the principal act on parole regimes to be unconstitutional.
A Draft Correctional Matters Amendment Bill was published for comment in July 2020.
The portfolio committee on justice and correctional services sought comment on the bill in December 2020.
The committee adopted the bill without amendments.
The select committee on security and justice also adopted the bill without amendments.