W/O Petra Els of the Jeffreys Bay Police has made a request to residents to make sure they apply for a certificate of competence if they own a muzzle loading firearm. This certificate must be applied for before 10 January 2012.

“Please do not leave it to the last minute to apply for your certificate”, says W/O Els. “It is not a license that is required, just a certificate of competence but the penalties are severe for not being in possession of the certificate”.

The amendment to the Fire Arm act will determine how many muzzle loading firearms there are in South Africa. At present there are no regulations in place regarding possession, import or export of the weapons.

Definition of a muzzle loading-firearm

Muzzle-loading firearm means a barreled device that can fire only a single shot, per barrel, and requires after each shot fired the individual reloading through the muzzle end of the barrel with separate components consisting of:

(i) a measured charge of black powder or equivalent propellant;
(ii) a wad; and
(iii) a lead bullet, sabot or shot functioning as a projectile and ignited with a flint, match, wheel or percussion cap.

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