Submission on the Firearms Control Act Amendment Bill 2021
2 August 2021
The FW de Klerk Foundation recently shared the alarm of many South Africans regarding certain proposals in the recent Firearms Control Act Amendment Bill. Among other things one of the most concerning proposals contained in the Bill is the proposed removal of self-defence as a reason to own a firearm in South Africa.
The Constitution guarantees the right to life and the right to freedom and security of the person - which includes the right to be free from all forms of violence whether they are of a public or private nature. Indeed, the right to life may be regarded as the most fundamental right of all - because, axiomatically, without it none of the other constitutional rights can be enjoyed.
The right to freedom and security of the person – for example not to be subject to violence or rape - is crucial for the enjoyment of the capstone right to human dignity. For this reason, the protection of the lives and persons of citizens is generally regarded as the most fundamental function and duty of any state.
Unfortunately this is a duty that the state in South Africa has lamentably failed to carry out.