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Parliament, Tuesday, 19 February 2019- The National Assembly (NA) today at its first ordinary sitting for 2019 adopted three (3) Bills; Traditional Leadership and Governance Framework Amendment Bill, National Minimum Wage Bill and the Carbon Tax Bill. The House further revived three (3) Bills which had previously been introduced but lapsed due to the 2018 end of the year recess.

The Traditional Leadership and Governance Framework Amendment Bill was referred to the House by the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) on 4 December 2018 for concurrence. The Bill seeks to amend the Traditional Leadership and Governance Framework Act, 2003, so as to make provision for extended timeframes within which kingship or queenship councils and traditional councils must be established. Further, the Bill seeks to align the term of office of tribal authorities, traditional councils and kingship or queenship councils with that of the National House of Traditional Leaders.

The National Assembly further approved the request of the Portfolio Committee on Labour, granting permission for the introduction of the National Minimum Wage Amendment Bill 2019. The general purpose of the Bill is to amend the National Minimum Wage Act, 2018 so as to correct a cross-reference; and to provide for matters connected therewith. The national Minimum Wage Act is aimed at advancing economic development and social justice by improving the wages of lowest paid workers, protecting workers from unreasonably low wages, preserving the value of the national minimum wage, promoting collective bargaining; and supporting economic policy.

Also passed in the National Assembly this afternoon was the Carbon Tax Bill. The Bill was introduced by Finance Minister and seeks to provide for the imposition of a tax on the carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalent of greenhouse gas emissions; and to provide for matters connected therewith.

The following Bills were revived in the National Assembly following their lapse due to rising of Parliament in 2018 December: Restitution of Land Rights Amendment Bill, Road Accident Benefit Scheme Bill and Firearms Control Amendment Bill.

After consideration of the Report of the Portfolio Committee on Rural Development and Land Reform on the Restitution of Land Rights Amendment Bill, the National Assembly revived the Bill. The Bill seeks to amend the Restitution of Land Rights Act, 1994, so as to develop and keep a National Land Restitution Register, to amend the cut-off date for lodging a claim for restitution and regulate the prioritisation of claims and repeal the Restitution of Land Rights Amendment Act, 2014.

The Road Accident Benefit Scheme Bill aims to provide for a social security scheme for the victims of road accidents and to establish the Road Accident Benefit Scheme Administrator to administer and implement the scheme. The Bill also seeks to provide a set of defined benefits on a no-fault basis to persons for bodily injury or death caused by or arising from road accidents.

The third Bill revived this afternoon, the Firearms Control Amendment Bill, seeks to amend the Firearms Control Act, 2000, and provides for additional opportunities to apply for the renewal of a license for a firearm or to surrender or dispose of a firearm. The Bill further seeks to provide for an administrative fine to be imposed where an application for the renewal of a license for a firearm was made later than the 90-day period for application provided by the Act.

ISSUED BY PARLIAMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA

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