• September 19th, 2019

Public must familiarise itself with Act repealing obsolete laws

WINDHOEK - The Justice Ministry is thus urging the public to access the Repeal of Obsolete Laws Act, 2018 (Act No. 21 of 2018) to familiarise themselves with it.

After ears of consultative engagements regarding obsolete laws left by apartheid regime, the Ministry of Justice has finally repealed all outdated laws- with the new act that came into force a week ago. The Law Reform and Development Commission reviewed the entire body of 557 laws in force in Namibia to reform and develop Namibian laws, the Ministry of Justice has announced  revealing that this exercise lead to the Act which came into force on March 1. This means all laws mentioned in the Act have been repealed or amended to the extent set out in the Act.  

This follows President Hage Geingob’s recent directive that the judiciary system should ensure that all unjust laws of the apartheid regimes are replaced with just laws in a democratic Namibia.  “We displaced the apartheid regime, which was a perverted form of government and replaced it with a true form of government. For this reason, our people cannot continue to be subjected to archaic and discriminatory laws anymore,” said Geingob addressing the justice system fraternity in Windhoek.     
Last December, the National Assembly vowed to get rid of the existing 143 obsolete laws after the Minister of Justice, Sacky Shanghala, tabled the long-awaited Repeal of Obsolete Laws Bill (Bill No 21 of 2018) in the National Assembly last November. At the time, the Bill provided for the repeal of certain obsolete laws and for incidental matters. The intention of the Bill was to remove 143 proclamations, ordinances and Acts from the statute books, through the Repeal of Obsolete Laws Bill.
Many of these laws, by-laws, regulations, proclamations and ordinances are discriminatory on the grounds of sex, race, colour, ethnic origin, religion, creed and social and economic status. Some of the obsolete laws that parliament wanted repealed started being implemented from 1915.

Therefore, parliamentarians reasoned that most of these laws were crafted to enforce apartheid white supremacy, to instil racial segregation, divide and rule Namibian people based on ethnic lines, and to dehumanise them.
Furthermore, Geingob said it is imperative for the justice system to introduce laws to help combat a number of social ills that are hampering socio-economic progress. While recognising the effort and commitment to improving the wellbeing of all citizens, he noted with concern the prevalence of incidents of Gender-Based Violence within communities.   He maintained it is a source of great concern that the nation continues to lose innocent lives, especially those of women and girls, as a result of gender-based violence, perpetrated mostly by men.   
The Presidents is however pleased by the various initiatives introduced by the stakeholders in the criminal justice system as part of the process of intensifying the ongoing campaign to combat gender-based violence in the country.  Geingob therefore urged all institutions involved in law and decision making to continue working tirelessly to find solutions to these heinous crimes.  

Albertina Nakale
2019-03-11 09:42:14 6 months ago

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