Mthethwa licence promises impossible - FF+

2010-11-25 20:44

Cape Town - Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa's undertaking to reduce the backlog in gun licences within nine months is "basically impossible", Freedom Front Plus MP Pieter Groenewald said on Thursday.

"It is basically impossible that the undertaking of the minister that the backlog in the renewal of licences of firearms will be completed within nine months will be met," Groenewald said in a statement.

"What is also worrying is that there are approximately four million firearms in the country and only 1.3 million applications for re-licensing were received.

"More than 2.7 million firearms are therefore still on the old system in terms of the previous Act."

Mthethwa said in a parliamentary reply to Groenewald that 1.3 million applications for the renewal of firearm licences have been received since the coming into force of the new Firearms Control Act in 2000.

He said 499 043 of the applications had been approved, 15 766 denied and 2 009 were on appeal.

The figures "confirm" that the backlog in the processing of the applications by the police is more than 800 000, Groenewald said.

"It confirms the view and supports the FF Plus' proposal to the minister that all old licences should remain legal and only new purchases of firearms should be licensed in terms of the new Act."

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