Department of Justice and Constitutional Development
The prescribed rate of interest has been adjusted.
The justice and constitutional development department published the adjusted rate in Government Gazette 43475 in terms of the Prescribed Rate of Interest Act.
The prescribed rate is the maximum rate of interest that may be claimed by a creditor with regard to interest-bearing debts.
It applies to all debts unless a different rate is set by law, by trade custom or by agreement between the parties.
The rate of interest stands at 8,75 percent per annum as from 1 May 2020.
Meanwhile, the justice and correctional services minister, Ronald Lamola, during a political overview in parliament, revealed that the ministry will be reviewing some policies and is looking forward to “thoughtful contributions which will emanate from public debates through the legislative process so that together, we can address overcrowding in correctional centres”.
“The high number of those imprisoned for economic crimes has prompted us to ask ourselves whether incarceration should be the only option at our disposal,” he said.
The minister pointed out that short term incarceration for low risk crimes does not give enough time for the correctional services system to reform and rehabilitate offenders.
“We are carefully examining the criminal justice system in areas such as sentencing so that incarceration does not become the only option for such crimes.”
Over the next five years, an additional 3000 bed spaces will be created through upgrades and construction of new facilities.
“However, as I have said, experience has taught us that it is not possible for our infrastructure projects to outpace the rate of conviction due to our high crime rate in the country.”
The minister confirmed that the ministry will continue to manage overcrowding through effective and appropriate use of conversion of sentence to community correctional supervision, release on parole for inmates and transfers between centres so that we can optimally use our bed spaces.
As regards the Special COVID-19 Parole Dispensation, the minister indicated that 3 557 inmates across the country had been released and none had been re-arrested thus far.