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Concerns over Private Security Industry Regulation bill

The objective of the Private Security Industry Regulation Bill to regulate foreign ownership won't change.

The objective of the Private Security Industry Regulation Amendment Bill to regulate foreign ownership won't change.

CAPE TOWN - The acting chairperson of the Police Portfolio Committee on Thursday told Eyewitness News on Thursday that the objective of the Private Security Industry Regulation Amendment Bill to regulate foreign ownership is not going to change.

On Wednesday, the technical team responsible for drafting the bill was told to address concerns with the proposed legislation before reporting back to the committee.

But this was seen by some as a request to have the bill redrafted.

Democratic Alliance MP Annelize van Wyk said she will ask the minister to strengthen the technical team dealing with the bill.

"The person that was involved in the principle act should be called in to assist us in the drafting and the changes that will be made."

The proposed bill will impose limitations on foreign ownership in the private security industry and give the police minister additional powers to regulate the sector.

It will force companies to sell off 51 percent of their holdings to South Africans.

Several private security companies raised concerns that the proposed changes will result in job losses and scare foreign investors.

The industry is estimated to be worth R50 billion and employs more than one million people.

Van Wyk said changes to the bill will be made but the objective remains the same.

Some security companies warned they will go to court to stop the bill if it limits foreign ownership.

There are also claims that limiting foreign ownership is inherently xenophobic.

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