Three days before the 2020-21 national firearms amnesty ended, the SAPS reported that just 40,729 firearms had been handed in, either for destruction or by gun owners with expired licences applying for new licences. Assuming that all the firearms handed in had expired licences, this is only 9% of the 450,000+ firearms which the Supreme Court of Appeal estimated were in illegal possession due to licence non-renewal when it upheld the constitutionality of firearm licence renewals days before the amnesty began. Briefing 1 explores what happens now that the amnesty has ended and was developed for a Portfolio Committee on Police meeting scheduled for 16 February at which the SAPS will be reporting on the amnesty. It includes key questions SAPS needs to answer to explain why the amnesty yielded such a poor response and what it plans to do to recover illegal guns and deal with gun owners in illegal possession as a result of licence expiry.

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