On 8 September 2020, the state attorney informed SA Hunters of the intention by the SA Police to recall a 2009 High Court interdict that maintained the validity of the old green firearm licence.
The state attorney believes that firearm owners with old green licences had more than ample opportunity during three amnesty periods to replace these licences without any legal consequences. The present amnesty period is the last one of the three referred to.
The state attorney suggests that SA Hunters withdraw the main application of 2009 and support the recall of the 2009 interdict. The Board of SA Hunters was expecting this and already advised affected members to obtain their firearm competency certificates and apply for new licences to replace the old green licence.
There are obviously members of the public who would be in exactly the same situation as SA Hunters members that still rely on the old green licences and that would be affected if the interdict is recalled.
The Board of SA Hunters has started deliberation with our legal team on managing the matter.
To the best information available there are approximately 670 000 old green licences that may still be valid and in use. SA Hunters does not believe it is feasible to use the current amnesty for firearm owners to surrender their firearms to the SAPS and reapply for new licences.
There are about 100 working days left of the current amnesty period. It could mean that at least 6700 firearms would be handed in at police stations per day. This is over and above the nearly 3 000 firearms per day of which the white licences had expired and that also have to be handed in. “Another practical solution would have to be found,’ said Fred Camphor, CEO of SA Hunters.
SA Hunters will work with interest groups in the firearm-owner community and will consult with other interested parties and individuals towards finding a solution. SA Hunters requests interested groups and individuals to contact SA Hunters to enable broad consultation.
SA Hunters will keep the public informed of further developments.
A copy of the letter from the state attorney is available on request.