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May 03, 2005

Domestic Violence Act provision comes under ConCourt scrutiny

Ahmed Raffik Omar found himself on the wrong side of the law when he failed to pay maintenance to his ex-wife timeously, according to a report in The Star. But his subsequent arrest for breaching the terms of the protection order she obtained against him led him to the Constitutional Court where he will appear on Thursday to challenge the mandatory provision in the Domestic Violence Act that requires an arrest warrant to be issued with a protection order. Omar claims the provision requiring that a warrant of arrest be issued breached his right to freedom and security when a protection order was granted against him in April 2003. Lisa Vetten, of the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation, told the paper the case was cause for concern. ‘The main reasons why that provision (issuing of a warrant of arrest with a protection order) is in the Act is because it recognises the immediacy and importance of violence. ‘It recognises that a woman whose life is in danger cannot go to court and wait in the queues there, and then go to the police and wait in the queues there to have a warrant of arrest issued.’ The argument that the Act was abused by some people did not mean it had to be changed, she added.
Full report in The Star


Supplied courtesy of Legalbrief Today.



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