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Six Months Firearms Amnesty Period in Place

August 7, 2020

South African Police Service

A new six month firearms amnesty period kicked off on 1 August 2020.

The declaration of the amnesty was published in Government Gazette 43576.

The amnesty will remain in place until 31 January 2021.

In a statement, the South African Police Service (SAPS) confirmed that parliament approved the amnesty last week.

SAPS added that the previous amnesty period between December 2019 and May 2020 was “thwarted by the unexpected Covid-19 pandemic”.

Nevertheless, 46 714 firearms were handed in to the police.

SAPS holds the view that “there are much more firearms out there that still need to be surrendered and we are confident the response to the previous amnesty would have been even more resounding if it were not for the pandemic”.

The restrictions imposed by Levels 5 and 4 of the lockdown prevented people from turning in illegal as well as unlicensed and unwanted firearms and ammunition.

SAPS called on people to take advantage of the period to either hand in firearms and ammunition either for destruction or renewal of a competency certificate and a valid licence.

According to the notice, the application for a licence must be lodged within 14 days from the date on which the firearm was surrendered with the relevant Designated Firearms Officer.

SAPS declared that no indemnity will be granted for firearms used to commit any crime.

“All firearms that have been handed in will undergo ballistic testing to ensure that they have not been used in the commission of any crimes, before they can be considered for destruction.”