The amendment of the Combatting of Rape Act of 2000 bill, which is among five other bills relating to sexual and gender-based violence, will only be tabled in the National Assembly in 2021.
Justice Minister Yvonne Dausab told the National Assembly at its last seating for 2020 on Thursday afternoon that the bills were already certified by Attorney General and simply awaiting tabling.
The other bills include Combatting of Domestic Violence Act of 2003, Criminal Procedure Act of 1977 as amended, Magistrate’s Court of 1944 as amended and the High Court Act of 1990.
Dausab said these bills cover issues of public interest such as an increase in sentencing, revised safeguards for victims of sexual and domestic violence, and stricter bail of people charged with sexual and domestic violence.
“It is my hope that the time provided to read, reflect and consider the objective the amendments and proposals is adequate,” Dausab said.
Despite the postponement of the tabling of the bills, the minister further pointed out the importance of the input of law makers on the amendments.
“This meant we needed to accept the postponement of the tabling of the Bills until then in order to enable every member of this August House to meaningfully and constructively participate in the intended discussions,” Dausab added.