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Mpumalanga Witchcraft Suppression Bill
Acct. ID: 186499
Notice ID: 14932
Posted: July 7th., 2007
This Notice has been viewed 4503 times
Proclaimed by: Damon Leff
Proclaimed from: Hoogekraal - southern Cape, South Africa
The Office of the Premier of Mpumalanga has drafted a new Witchcraft Suppression Bill. The South African Pagan Rights Alliance (Sapra) has registered as an interested and affected party and has submitted objection to the draft Bill.
Together with the South African Pagan Council (SAPC) , Sapra has
launched a national call for all South African Pagans who
self-identify as Witches to register as interested and affected
parties and to lodge objections against the Bill.
The draft Mpumalanga Witchcraft Suppression Bill 2007 will provide for the suppression of witchcraft in the province of Mpumalanga.
Sapra appeals to all South African Pagans who define themselves as Witches to register as an interested and affected party with the Office of the Premier, Mpumalanga without delay and to submit comment in opposition to the proposed Bill without delay.
The South African Pagan Rights Alliance has submitted a formal appeal to the Premier and to the drafters of this Bill not to proceed with the enactment of any legislation which would in any way prohibit or criminalise South African citizens on the grounds of religion or as the result of automatic inference of criminality. Existing criminal law already comprehensively covers the identification and punishment of criminal acts irrespective of the context within which such acts are perpetrated.
To the extent to which this proposed Bill provides for the suppression of witchcraft, a recognised belief system and religion, this Bill contradicts several sections of Chapter 2 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa (Act 108 of 1996) .
This Bill was based on the Witchcraft Suppression Act (Act 3 of 1957 as amended by Act 50 of 1970) , which is also unconstitutional, and to the extent to which this Act provides for the suppression of witchcraft and of practices associated with witchcraft, a recognised belief system and religion, this Act contradicts several sections of Chapter 2 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa (Act 108 of 1996) .
This Alliance argues that the proposed Mpumalanga Witchcraft Suppression Bill 2007 and the national Witchcraft Suppression Act (Act 3 of 1957 as amended by Act 50 of 1970) must be declared unconstitutional and invalid to the extent to which this legislation identifies one group of persons, on the grounds of belief, to be prohibited and criminal.
The Alliance has further requested that the Office of the Premier of Mpumalanga draft a new Bill entitled 'The Mpumalanga Witchcraft Protection Act' which will protect Witches (and alleged witches) against further and future discrimination and persecution by the state and people of South Africa, in accordance with Chapter 9 (4) of the Bill of Rights which states “National legislation must be enacted to prevent or prohibit unfair discrimination”.
The Alliance will be submitting further submission directly to Parliament calling for the scrapping of the national Witchcraft Suppression Act and for the drafting of a new Act entitled ‘The Witchcraft Protection Act’.
For contact details for registration and submission as an I&AP, or for a copy of Sapra's submission against this Bill contact the South African Pagan Rights Alliance.
The future is in your hands, not those of the drafters of this
excuse for further entrenching religious stereotyping, scapegoating and persecution of Witches.
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