Security act changes may deter investors

Security act changes may deter investors

2012-10-31 13:36

Cape Town - Amendments to the Private Security Industry Regulation Act could result in a flight of foreign capital from the country, Parliament's police portfolio committee heard on Wednesday.

Martin Hood, a lawyer representing three private security firms, told MPs they did not believe the amendments would lead to greater regulation of the industry.

Hood represents SSG Operational Risk Services, Nicholls Steyn and Associates, and Eventsafe Security Services.

Hood said currently the Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority (Psira) was not doing its job, and the legislation would do little to change this.

"It (Psira) regards the collection of fees (as) more important than the regulation of the industry."

He accused Psira of not conducting proper enforcement, specifically where "fly-by-night operators" were concerned.

"It concentrates on the established operators, because it is easier to victimise them than to go after the unregistered operators."

Hood said Psira needed greater capacity to regulate the industry properly.

The Private Security Industry Regulation Amendment Bill, if passed, will restrict foreign ownership of security companies. Hood said there was no proof to support the government's view that foreign ownership of these companies affected national security. He said established foreign owners would take their money elsewhere.

"It would also send a message to other investors that foreign capital is not welcome in this county."

Hood proposed that any reference to limiting of foreign ownership be removed from the bill.

The bill gave Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa too much power to determine the percentage of foreign ownership in the industry, he said.

"There is a fundamental problem, not only in these proposals, but in most legislative proposals from government, that is sweeping powers that are given to ministers or officials without public scrutiny or accountability."

On Tuesday Mthethwa threw his weight behind the amendments, saying the growth of the private security industry in South Africa to the largest in the world demanded greater regulation.

Mthethwa brushed aside criticism that limitations on foreign ownership would lead to disinvestment.

"Indications are that when the time comes they (foreign owners) will sell the relevant shares to comply with the law, not close down as we are led to believe," he said.

  • johan.vanheerden.737 - 2012-10-31 14:20

    Ja Mthetwa and pigs will fly!

      claudia.meads - 2012-10-31 16:19

      And so the Zimbobification of the South African economy continues - viz chase foreign capital away at any- and every opportunity.., all while the country's trade deficit continues to grow - MADNESS..!

  • reinier.van.den.bergh - 2012-10-31 14:33

    I agree.. Why should foreigners own the security industry too... Send them back to the New York Stock exchange ...

      cynic.martian.3 - 2012-10-31 14:46

      Why not?

      lsfreak - 2012-10-31 14:48

      Why cause I think people are better looked after by these "overseas" companies like Chubb or ADT than our local guys that are just in it for the money. I've heard of peoples car been stolen just outside the gates gaurded by there own company and petrol been been syphoned because they are so "well" paid (locally).

  • reinier.van.den.bergh - 2012-10-31 14:40

    Currently those companies are milking us ...the time they still invested is LONG past .. they are taking money out of the country now

  • denny.cray - 2012-10-31 14:49

    State controlled capitalism is fascism. Get used to it buddy boy.

  • godfrey.welman - 2012-10-31 14:53

    If only SAPS were doing its job. When did all these security companies come into being?????

  • sandy.sutherland.58 - 2012-10-31 14:54

    "Indications are that when the time comes they (foreign owners) will sell the relevant shares to comply with the law, not close down as we are led to believe," he said. - IDIOT - what part of 'flight of capital' does he not understand - as this would be exactly that!

  • Theosfiso Joseph - 2012-10-31 15:07

    any 1 to help me guyz,also wana start my own security company i dnt knw were to start,my email( ) my number 0745861622 plz if nt interested do nt criticise

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-10-31 21:13

      Contact: The Security Association of South Africa (SASA) P O Box 414 Kloof, 3640 Tel: (031)764-6765 Fax: (031) 764-6765 Security Industry Regulatory Body: Training: Good Luck.

  • luke.dekoker - 2012-10-31 15:18

    Naturely they want more power to stop decent overseas companies because the taxpayers' moneys are wasted by CancER (on zuma & click) instead of to create jobs, thus they need this bill to help the thieves to have easy access to the private properties to steal from. Why not rather put a Bill in place to STOP the millions that will flow out on the scam/corrupt E-toll system??

  • quartus.vanzyl - 2012-10-31 15:26

    The thing is actually that the government sees this as a security threat. They believe that these foreign security firms could invade SA and restore apartheid!! They only trust the whities as far as they can see them.

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