The Democratic Alliance (DA) has expressed concern at the International Crimes Bill which has been tabled in Parliament.
The aim of the Bill is to repeal the implementation of the Rome Statute Act, and to withdraw South Africa from the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Justice Minister Mike Masutha’s office says it will allow the Parliamentary processes to run their course before it comments.
The DA says the Bill will not affect international leaders accused of crimes against humanity, because of diplomatic immunity. The party’s Federal Chairperson James Selfe says the Bill makes the task of arresting an international criminal more laborious.
“In terms of the Rome Statute and the implementation of it, if you had such a person and if the International Criminal Court had issued a warrant for the arrest of that person, then no other procedures needed to be followed you had a duty as a signatory state, to arrest that person once that person is on your territory.
In terms of this bill, you would first have to find out whether the person had committed a crime, whether credible witnesses were available to come and give evidence, whether evidence that you needed to secure a prosecution was available, it’s much more difficult to bring a successful prosecution with this bill.”