Cabinet has approved a number of new bills for submission to parliament, including new proposed legislation around land, discrimination and the establishment of Postbank as a state bank.
In a media briefing on Friday (26 February), acting minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni indicated that the bills would undergo the full public participation process, including an open comment period.
The proposed legislation is outlined in more detail below.
Land Court Bill
Cabinet approved the submission of the Land Court Bill to parliament for processing.
The bill establishes a specialist Land Court, with its judgements, orders and decisions appealable at the proposed specialist Land Court of Appeal.
“The bill will resolve the challenges that were experienced under the Restitution of Land Right Act, such as backlogs in land claims and dispute resolution mechanisms when disputes arise,” Ntshavheni said.
In this way it will contribute immensely to the land reform programme, she said.
Gas Amendment Bill
Cabinet approved the submission of the Gas Amendment Bill to parliament.
Ntshavheni said that the proposed bill seeks to align the gas industry, to amongst others new transportation technologies of natural and unconventional gases that were not catered for in the current Gas Act from 2001.
“The amendments, which have been fully consulted with the relevant stakeholders, will contribute to the ongoing investment infrastructure to ensure diversity of the country’s energy mix,” she said.
South African Postbank Amendment Bill
Cabinet approved the publication of the South African Postbank Amendment Bill for public comment.
Ntshavheni said that the bill provides for the establishment of the South African Postbank Holding Company in terms of the Banks Act.
“The company will provide for the inclusion pf financially excluded members of the public to participate meaningfully in economic activities. It will also provide a facility for some of the government’s financial services,” she said.
The Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Amendment Bill
Cabinet has approved the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Amendment Bill for public comment.
Ntshavheni said that the proposed amendments seek to address the weaknesses of the current Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act which was first introduced in 2000.
“The proposed amendments will strengthen its ability to prevent discrimination and promote equality for all South Africans,” she said.