Cyril Ramaphosa sends Transport Amendment Bill back to Parliament
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PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa has not signed the National Land Transport Amendment Bill into law due to his reservations on its constitutionality.
Instead, Ramaphosa sent the bill back to the National Assembly for reconsideration.
The bill was initially sent for assent and signing into law after being passed early last year.
In a letter to National Assembly Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, the president said he has considered the bill and also sought legal advice on its constitutionality.
“Given my reservations about the constitutionality of aspects of the bill, I cannot assent to it and am therefore referring it back to the National Assembly,” he said in his letter on September 9.
Ramaphosa said Section 11 of the existing National Land Transport Act set out the respective responsibilities of the three spheres of the government.
“Clause 7 of the bill seeks to amend that section and doing so will alter the statutory responsibilities of the three spheres of government.”
He also said the submissions by the South African Local Government Association and the City of Cape Town have contended that the manner clause 7 did so was not consistent with the Constitution.
Ramaphosa said while it was possible that some of these reservations could be resolved by means of interpretation, it appeared to him that at least some probably cannot be resolved in this way.
“It is appropriate and desirable for all of the identified to be referred back to the National Assembly for reconsideration. I therefore refer the bill back to the National Assembly for reconsideration,” he said in his nine-page letter.
The bill was first introduced in Parliament in September 2016.
It was passed by the National Assembly and sent to the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) for concurrence in April 2018.
In March 2019 the NCOP passed the bill and returned it to the National Assembly for concurrence.
However, it lapsed in May 2019 and was revived in October the same year.
It was not until March 2020 the bill was passed by both Houses and sent to Ramaphosa for assent.