Relicensing your firearms


The official period for the relicensing of firearms closed on 31 March 2009

Provision was made for certain categories of persons who may in effect apply for renewal after 31 March 2009. The stipulations can be found in Government Gazette No 28039 dated 23 September 2005.

Please note the following URL on the SAPS website for those born in January, February or March, who were to complete their re-licensing by 31 March 2006.

Also please read the attached document which was circulated to all police stations in this regard.

The new firearms law, the Firearms Control Act, 2000 (Act 60 of 2000) as amended, together with the Firearms Control Regulations 2004, requires anyone who currently has a licence to possess a firearm to relicense that firearm under this new Act. The Minister for Safety and Security has allocated certain periods by which individuals will have to comply and have lodged an application for a competency certificate.

These periods are divided by the month of the individual's birth and are as follows: Those born in either

January, February or March

until 31 March 2006 *

April, May or June

until 31 March 2007**

July, August or September 

until 31 March 2008**

October, November or December 

until 31 March 2009**

* Please note that a media statement was made by the Minister for Safety and Security on 15 December 2005 which has given this group an extension until 31 March 2006 to register their competency certificate applications.

** Please note that another media statement was made by the Minister for Safety and Security on 21 February 2006 which has extended the deadline from 31 December until 31 March of the following year for each of the groups to register their competency certificate applications.

Validity of firearm licences held under the Arms & Ammunition Act, 1969 (Act 75 of 1969)

As things stand at present, and as confirmed in a Press Statement by the Minister for Safety & Security, the current position is that firearm licences issued in terms of the 'old' (1969) Arms & Ammunition Act, and which were valid immediately before the commencement of the 'new' Firearms Control Act, 2000 (Act 60 of 2000) on 1 July 2004, remain valid for five years (until 30 June 2009) - unless terminated, cancelled or surrendered.

If you renew your 'old' licences within the deadlines laid down, that will be the end of the matter. If you do not renew on schedule, you will be required to (lawfully) dispose of such firearms on or before 30 June 2009.  This means that if you wish to retain those firearms beyond 30 June 2009, you are required to renew their licences before the scheduled deadlines.

Of course, if he deems it necessary and/or desirable, the Minister may amend these deadlines by publishing new ones in an official notice in a Government Gazette.

There is ONLY a theorical test and NO practical handling or shooting is required for this process! This one test will cover ALL the firearms you currently own!

You need to be assessed by a registered assessor and be found competent against the national standard that has been set, SAQA ID unit standard 117705, Demonstrate knowledge of the Firearms Control Act, 2000 (Act 60 of 2000), applicable to possessing a firearm.  Click here to find the content against which you will be assessed.    [.pdf] 

The process to reregister, which changed slightly on 31July 2006, is relatively simple:

1.  You will need a determined sum of money and a certified copy of the front page your national ID document.

2.  You bring the above and come to the Aquila Assessment Centre where one of our assistants will assist
     you.  You will need about 10-15 minutes to fill out the necessary documentation to register on our system
     and have a short pre-assessment meeting wherein the process will be fully explained. 

3.  After your pre-assessment meeting, you take the registered material home and read the contents after which   
     you will answer a question and answer paper of 55 questions which is included in your manual.  On completion
     of this self-test (you may look up the correct answers in the material), you will bring the completed question and
     answer sheet back to the Aquila Assessment Centre for assessment.

4.  You need to have a minimum of 46 correct answers and ensure that we receive the question and answer
     sheet timeously before you are due to write an invigilated multi choice paper of 25 questions without refering
     to your material at the Aquila Assessment Centre's premises. This will ONLY take place by 

5.  On successful completion of the 25 question test, after three working days you need to collect or arrange
     for collection of your proficiency certificate issued by the Aquila Assessment Centre. We require a
     signature on collection.

6.  For those who entered the programme after 1 April 2006, the SASSETA will issue a further national
     learner achievement certificate to you which, upon arrival at the Aquila Assessment Centre, must be 
     collected from us.  Once again, we will require a signature on collection.