TuksLaw Professor on Listeriosis and Section 61 of the Consumer Protection Act 68 of 2008
8 March 2018
Professor Jacolien Barnard from the Department of Mercantile Law in the Faculty of Law at the University of Pretoria participated in a CapeTalk Radio morning show on Tuesday, 6 March 2018, in light of the Listeriosis outbreak and the subsequent denial by Enterpise. Prof Barnard commented on the new product liability regime introduced by section 61 of the Consumer Protection Act 68 of 2008.
Section 61 aims to protect consumers where unsafe, defective or hazardous products produced and supplied in terms of the Act causes damage (such as death, illness and injury) to consumers and the liability of suppliers in the supply chain. To assist consumers a form of strict product liability was introduced by the Act and the element of negligence (which has been notoriously difficult) no longer needs to be proven.
Prof Barnard further commented that it is the responsibility of the National Consumer Commission as well as other relevant regulatory authorities to educate and inform affected consumers. This is necessary in particular with regards to vulnerable consumers as defined in terms of the Act who live in remote or low-density populated areas and do not readily have access to the internet or smartphones to keep up to date on the risks and procedures.
Prof Barnard, an associate professor in the Department of Mercantile Law, is the co-author (with Evert van Eeden) of the Consumer Protection Law in South Africa Second Edition, which was officially launched on 25 January 2018.
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