South Africa: States’ duties: protecting human rights vs. implementing counter-terrorism measures

By Odette Coetzee and Johan LeGrange, from the Diaz Reus South Africa office.
Internationally. all States have a right and a duty to take effective counter-terrorism measures to prevent and deter future terrorist attacks and prosecute those responsible for carrying out such acts to fulfil their obligations under human rights laws to protect the life and security of individuals in their jurisdictions.
In July 2022. South Africa’s Police Minister Bheki Cele introduced the Protection of Constitutional Democracy Against Terrorist and Related Activities Amendment Bill.This amendment bill is part of SA’s efforts to fix shortcomings identified by the global anti-terrorism and anti-money laundering standards body. the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and to bring the existing Protection of Constitutional Democracy against Terrorist and Related Activities Act, Act 33 of 2004 («principal act») in line with developments in international law and Constitutional Court judgments.The Bill aims to amend the principal act to delete, amend and insert certain definitions to:

i) Align SA’s statutory framework with international instruments,