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Plant Breeders' Rights Act, 1976 (Act No. 15 of 1976)

42. Appeal against decision or action of the registrar


(1) A person who feels aggrieved by any decision or action taken by the registrar in terms of this Act may, within the period and in the manner prescribed and upon payment of the prescribed fees, appeal to the Minister against the decision or action in question.


(a) The Minister shall refer the appeal for investigation and decision to a board the members of which shall be appointed by the Minister and which shall consist of—
(i) one person designated as chairman on account of his knowledge of law;
(ii) two persons who in the opinion of the Minister have expert knowledge of the subject of the appeal.
(b) A person appointed under subparagraph (ii) of paragraph (a) shall be disqualified as a member of the board if he has any direct or indirect personal interest in the outcome of the appeal.


(a) An appeal under subsection (1) shall be heard on the date and at the time and place fixed by the chairperson and he or she shall advise the person appealing and any other party that has an interest in the appeal, in writing thereof.
(b) The chairperson may, for the purposes of the hearing of an appeal—
(i) summon any person who may give material information concerning the subject of the hearing or who has in his or her possession or custody or under his or her control any document which has any bearing upon the subject of the hearing, to appear before him or her at a time and place specified in the summons, to be interrogated or to produce that document, and the registrar may retain for examination any document so produced;
(ii) administer an oath to or accept an affirmation from any person called as a witness at the hearing; and
(iii) call any person present at the hearing as a witness and interrogate him or her and require him or her to produce any document in his or her possession or custody or under his or her control.
(c) The procedure at the hearing of an appeal shall be as prescribed.
(d) The person appealing and the registrar shall be entitled to be represented at an appeal by an advocate or an attorney or by a patent agent registered under section 20 of the Patents Act, 1978 (Act No. 57 of 1978).

[Section 42(3) substituted by section 23 of Act No. 15 of 1996]


(4) If a person appointed under subsection (2)(a)—
(a) dies during the investigation of the appeal or so soon before the commencement of the investigation that the vacancy cannot be filled in time;
(b) is unable to act and another person cannot be appointed in time; or
(c) is, after the investigation has commenced, unable to continue therewith,

the parties may agree that the investigation be continued by the remaining members, in which event, where the member who has died or has become incapacitated was or is the chairman of the board, the Minister shall designate one of the remaining members to act as chairman.


(a) If the parties do not agree under subsection (4), the investigation shall be adjourned in order that the Minister may appoint a member, in accordance with the requirements of subsection (2)(a), in the place of the member who has died or has become incapacitated.
(b) Where an appointment has been made under paragraph (a), the investigation shall, if the parties so agree, be continued as from the stage at which the investigation was interrupted by the death or incapacitation of a member, or shall, if the parties do not so agree, be commenced de novo.


(6) The board may after investigation of the appeal—
(a) confirm, set aside or vary the relevant decision or action of the registrar;
(b) order the registrar to execute the decision of the board in connection therewith.


(a) The decision of the board shall be in writing, and a copy thereof shall be furnished to the registrar, the appellant and any other party.
(b) [Section 42(7)(b) deleted by section 59 of Act No. 88 of 1996]


(8) If the board sets aside any decision or action by the registrar, the prescribed fees paid by the appellant in respect of the appeal in question shall be refunded to him, or, if the board varies any such decision or action, it may in its discretion direct that the whole or any part of such fees be refunded to the appellant.