Witchcraft Suppression Act, 1957
|Witchcraft Suppression Act, 1957
witch smelling". It was enacted by the apartheid regime, and is based on a similar colonial-era statute of the Cape Colony. It has been argued that some provisions of the act are no longer constitutional in that they violate the Bill of Rights, which protects the freedom of religion and the freedom to participate in cultural life. As a consequence the act is currently under review by the South African Law Reform Commission.
The Witchcraft Suppression Act, 1957 (Act No. 3 of 1957) is an act of the Parliament of South Africa that prohibits various activities related to witchcraft and "|
The act came into force on 22 February 1957. It was amended in 1970 by the Witchcraft Suppression Amendment Act, 1970, which added one new offence (purporting to use supernatural powers to accuse another person of causing death, injury or damage) and converted fines denominated in pounds to rands. The operation of the act was made uniform across the former homelands in 1997 by the Justice Laws Rationalisation Act, 1996. It was amended again in 1997 by the Abolition of Corporal Punishment Act, 1997, which abolished the use of whipping to punish certain offences.
This version incorporates all amendments up to and including those introduced on 5 September 1997 by the Abolition of Corporal Punishment Act, 1997; this is the version of the act currently in force. A series of other versions are also available on Wikisource, including the version originally enacted without amendments.
To provide for the suppression of the practice of witchcraft and similar practices.
(English text signed by the Governor-General.)
(Assented to 19th February, 1957.)
as amended by
Be it enacted by the Queen’s Most Excellent Majesty, the Senate and the House of Assembly of the Union of South Africa, as follows:—
1. Any person who—
shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction—
2. Where any person in respect of whom an offence referred to in paragraph (a) or (b) of section 1 was committed, is killed, it shall be presumed, until the contrary is proved, that such person was killed in consequence of the commission of such offence.
3. The laws mentioned in the Schedule to this Act are hereby repealed to the extent set out in the fourth column of that Schedule.
4. This Act shall be called the Witchcraft Suppression Act, 1957.
|Province or territory.||No. and year of law.||Title or subject of law.||Extent of repeal.|
|Cape of Good Hope.||Act No. 24 of 1886.||The Native Territories’ Penal Code.||Chapter XI.|
|〃||Act No. 2 of 1895.||The Witchcraft Suppression Act, 1895.||The whole.|
|Natal.||Law No. 19 of 1891.||Natal Code of Native Law.||Section one hundred and twenty-nine of the Schedule as substituted by Union Proclamation No. 168 of 1932.|
|Transvaal.||Ordinance No. 26 of 1904.||The Crimes Ordinance, 1904.||Sections twenty-nine to thirty-four inclusive.|
|Zululand.||Proclamation No. II of 1887.||Laws and Regulations for the Government of Zululand.||Regulations nine and ten.|
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