The National Assembly (NA) and National Council of Provinces (NCOP) have gone the extra mile to pass nine new bills for the country.
The only outstanding thing is for President Cyril Ramaphosa to append his signature for bills to be law.
Controversial NHI Bill included
These different bills include the controversial National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill.
The NHI Bill, which was passed by the NCOP, was supported by eight provinces, while the DA’s Western Cape flatly rejected it.
Other bills include the Prevention and Combating of Hate Crimes Bill, and Hate Speech and Judicial Matters Amendment Bill.
Additional bills in line to be legislated include the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication-related Information Amendment (RICA), Correctional Services Amendment, Agricultural Product Standards Amendment.
When Ramaphosa goes back to the office, he will be executing his mandate and signing all the bills into law.
Before the NHI Bill was passed, there was a lot of controversy around it. Medical schemes, medical practitioners and business leaders raised concerns about the bill. The parliamentary legal service also joined in the chorus.
More than 60 other bills still in process
Interestingly, more than 60 other bills are still in parliamentary processes. Some of them date back to 2010.
The country’s ever-changing landscape also needs an introduction of new piece of legislation. This is in order to safeguard the Constitution and the rights of citizens.
The Correctional Services Amendment Bill and the Agricultural Product Standards Amendment Bill are also in waiting. This according to the Parliamentary Monitoring Group.
The bill provides for the adequate level of independence of the Judicial Inspectorate for Correctional Services (JICS). This according to the Portfolio Committee on Justice and Correctional Services.
Correctional Services Amendment Bill to ensure inmates dignity
“The bill also makes additional provisions for the custody of all inmates under conditions of human dignity,” said that committee.
The Agricultural Product Standards Amendment Bill is aimed at bringing control systems and correct dates placed on products.
Agricultural Standards Amendment Bill to provide more transparency
“This will ensure that the public has access to accurate and reliable information regarding the products that they consume. The bill is expected to improve quality assurance and advance food safety in South Africa.
It will further ensure that all agricultural products sold and exported from South Africa meet certain quality and safety standards. In addition, the regulatory framework for agricultural production, health, and food safety [will be] strengthened,” parliament said.