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National Heritage Resources Act, 1999 (Act No. 25 of 1999)

Chapter II : Protection and Management of Heritage Resources

Part 3 : Management

41. Restitution of heritage objects


(1) When a community or body with a bona fide interest makes a claim for the restitution of a movable heritage resource which is part of the national estate and is held by or curated in a publicly funded institution, the institution concerned must enter into a process of negotiation with the claimants regarding the future of the resource.


(2) The Minister may make regulations regarding the establishment of bona fide interest in terms of subsection (1) and the conditions under which such claims may be made.


(3) In the absence of an agreement on a heritage resource which is the subject of negotiations in terms of subsection (1), the claimants or the institution concerned may appeal to the Minister, who must, with due regard to subsection 5(4) and in a spirit of compromise—
(a) mediate between the parties concerned with the aim of finding a mutually satisfactory solution; and
(b) in the absence of agreement between the parties concerned, make a final decision on the future of the resource, including any conditions necessary to ensure its safety, the conditions of access of the claimants or the institution or any other interested party to the resource, or any other appropriate conditions.