The Traditional Health Practitioners Act (No 22 of 2007): a South African Constitutional mishap?
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Background:The Traditional Health Practitioners Act (Act No 22, 2007), which elicits controversy in the South African healthcare and public sector since proclamation, went untested through the legislature, driven inside the post-1994 socio-political dispensation.. No previous in-depth studies have been identified. Aims: The aim of this study was to determine and to reflect the Act's long term legal implications for the already statutory health professions and the public: specific with the focus on the Constitution and other legislations and possible ways to oppose it. Methods: This is an exploratory and descriptive research, in line with the modern-day history approach of investigation and reviewing research, using contemporary reports, news papers and articles as primary resources to reflect on the situation, thinking, opinions, trends and activities around Act No 22 and its implications on the Constitution and citizen's rights. The focus was also to put Act No 22 in a future in perspective. Findings are represented in narrative form. Results: Act No 22 (2007) was promulgated without an applicable and appropriate scientific needs-analysis. The Act seems to stand to a great extent in conflict with the Constitution as well as various other Acts, like the Witchcraft Suppression Act (No 3, 1957). Conclusions: The Act is still today, nearly a decade after promulgation, not fully active. It is a Constitutional mishap. Notwithstanding its constitutional controversy, the Act's political sanction by governmental agencies and political leaders will ensure that it will not vanish easily from the South African law books.
- Faculty of Humanities