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Government and SAPS dragging feet to get Convicted Offenders Bill on track

While Parliament is still in recess and the South African Police Services (SAPS) is not showing any real effort to get their systems in place to take DNA samples of released prisoners, rapists on the other hand are not taking a quick break from targeting innocent women and children daily.

The DNA Act (No. 37 of 2013) came into operation on 31 January 2015. It provided for buccal (saliva) samples being taken from all convicted Schedule 8 offenders (rape, murder, human trafficking, robbery, and culpable homicide) for the purposes of forensic DNA analysis. This procedure was implemented for a period of two years from the date of commencement of the Act for the transition to take place, who nobody thought would not be possible. The two-year period, however, expired on 26 January 2017.

The sampling process of convicted Schedule 8 offenders had to stop because it was no longer provided for in law. The DNA Act had to be amended in order for SAPS to proceed with the sampling process, which only happened after five years.

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