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Domestic Violence Act, 1998 (Act No. 116 of 1998)



Notice No. 1551

2 December 1998


(English text signed by the President.)

(Assented to 20 November 1998.)


It is hereby notified that the President has assented to the following Act, which is hereby published for general information:


To provide for the issuing of protection orders with regard to domestic violence; and for matters connected therewith.





RECOGNISING that domestic violence is a serious social evil; that there is a high incidence of domestic violence within South African society; that victims of domestic violence are among the most vulnerable members of society; that domestic violence takes on many forms; that acts of domestic violence may be committed in a wide range of domestic relationships; and that the remedies currently available to the victims of domestic violence have proved to be ineffective;


AND HAVING REGARD to the Constitution of South Africa, and in particular, the right to equality and to freedom and security of the person; and the international commitments and obligations of the State towards ending violence against women and children, including obligations under the United Nations Conventions on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women and the Rights of the Child;


IT IS THE PURPOSE of this Act to afford the victims of domestic violence the maximum protection from domestic abuse that the law can provide; and to introduce measures which seek to ensure that the relevant organs of state give full effect to the provisions of this Act, and thereby to convey that the State is committed to the elimination of domestic violence.


BE IT THEREFORE ENACTED by the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa, as follows:-