Sipho Mabena
Premium Journalist
3 minute read
12 May 2022
5:37 pm

DNA Bill delay sets rapists and murderers loose

Sipho Mabena

The Bill compels collection of DNA samples of those convicted of rape, murder, human trafficking, robbery and culpable homicide.

A group of community members from Riverlea protest outside the Johannesburg Magistrates court as a suspect appears on charges of Rape inside, 24 February 2022. The suspect was in a position of trust in the community which makes that rape even worse according to them. Picture: Neil McCartney

With forensic laboratory services choking on DNA tests from murder and rape cases, experts are sceptical about the state’s ability to effectively implement the proposed Bill forcing collection of DNA samples of rapists and murders. Civic organisations have also decried the delay in finalising the Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Amendment Act 37 of 2013 (Forensic Procedures Act) and the Convicted Offenders Bill as setting rapists and murderers loose. The Bill introduced in 2017 forces convicted Schedule 8 offenders (rape, murder, human trafficking, robbery and culpable homicide) to surrender a buccal DNA sample to the National Forensic DNA Database...