THE new draft of the Traditional Courts Bill released by Deputy Minister of Justice John Jeffery last week is better than previous versions, but still far from perfect, Legal Resources Centre attorney Wilmien Wicomb writes in a report for The Huffington Post.
“The new bill introduced on Monday, appears to represent a paradigm shift. I say this with guarded optimism, as we have missed the devilish details of legislation that undermines the rights of rural people in the past, and even on this version some red flags remain. But there is a lot to celebrate,” she writes.
Wicomb, who has tracked the Bill since it was first tabled in 2008, links the TCB to the Traditional and Khoi-San Leadership Bill (TKLB) currently being tested in public hearings around the country.
“(The TKLB) is the proposed continuation of the Traditional Leadership and Governance Framework Act, confirming and even strengthening the very mechanisms that have disempowered (rural people). If passed, it will destroy much of the good work done on the Traditional Courts Bill. The struggle continues,” Wicomb writes.