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Chapter 15:15

Radiation Protection Act

Act 5/2004



  1. Short title and date of commencement.
  2. Interpretation



  1. Establishment of the Radiation Protection Authority of Zimbabwe.
  2. Functions and powers of Authority.
  3. Board of Authority.
  4. Appointment and functions of Chief Executive Officer.
  5. Radiation protection officers and staff of Authority.
  6. Minister may give directions on matters of policy. PART III


  1. Funds of Authority.
  2. Investment of moneys not immediately required by the Authority.
  3. Accounts of Authority.
  4. Audit of Authority’s accounts.
  5. Internal Auditor.



14   Prohibition of certain practices.

  1. Appointment of radiation safety officer.
  2. Register of licences.
  3. Inspection and enforcement.
  4. Appeal to Administrative Court.
  5. Preservation of secrecy.
  6. Repeal of sections 84, 85 and 86 of Cap. 20:27 and savings.


First Schedule    Powers of Authority.

Second Schedule            Provisions applicable to the Board.

AN ACT to establish a Radiation Protection Authority and to confer powers and functions on such an Authority in relation to protecting the public and workers from dangers resulting from the use or abuse of equipment, devices or materials capable of producing ionizing radiation; and to provide for matters connected or incidental to the foregoing.

[Date of commencement: 1st July, 2005.]

WHEREAS Article IV of the International Atomic Energy Agency Statute approved on 26 October, 1956, provides as follows—

ARTICLE IV Membership

  1. The initial members of the Agency shall be those States Members of the United Nations or of any of the specialised agencies which shall have signed this Statute within ninety days after it is opened for signature and shall have deposited an instrument of ratification.
  2. Other members of the Agency shall be those States whether or not Members of the United Nations or of any specialised agencies, which deposit an instrument of acceptance of this Statute after their membership has been approved by the General Conference upon the recommendation of the Board of Governors. In recommending and approving a State for membership, the Board of Governors and the General Conference shall determine that the State is able and willing to carry out the obligations of membership in the Agency, giving the consideration to its ability and willingness to act in accordance with the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations.
  3. The Agency is based on the principle of sovereign equality of all its members, and all members, in order to ensure to all of them the rights and benefits resulting from membership, shall fulfil in good faith the obligation assured by them in accordance with this Statute.;

AND WHEREAS paragraphs 13 and 14 of the International Atomic Energy Agency Code of Conduct on the Safety and Security of Radioactive Sources further provide as follows:

“13 Every State should establish legislation and regulations that—

  • prescribe and assign governmental responsibilities for the safety and security of radioactive sources;
  • provide for the effective control of radioactive sources;
  • specify the requirements for protection against exposure to ionizing radiation;
  • specify the requirements for the safety and security of radioactive sources; and
  • provide for the establishment of a national register of those radioactive sources which pose the most significant risks, i.e. the radioactive sources belonging to Category I of the IAEA’s “Categorization of Radiation Sources”. However, in doing so, States should also devote appropriate attention to radioactive sources other than those belonging to Category I.

14 Such legislation and regulations should include, in particular—

  • the establishment of a regulatory body whose regulatory functions are effectively independent of other functions if that body is involved in both the management of radioactive sources and in their regulation. This body should have the powers listed in paragraphs 15 to 17.
  • measures, commensurate with the risks, to protect individuals, society and the environment from the deleterious effects of radiation;
  • administrative requirements relating to the authorization of the management of radioactive sources;
  • provisions for exemption, as appropriate, from the administrative requirements referred to in paragraph (c) above;
  • administrative requirements relating to the notification to the regulatory body, as appropriate, by an authorised person of actions involved in the management of such sources and of any other activity in relation to such sources which may engender a significant risk to individuals, society or the environment;
  • managerial requirements in particular relating to the establishment of adequate policies, procedures and measures for the control of radioactive sources
  • security measures to prevent, protect against, and ensure the timely detection of, the unauthorized access to, or the theft, loss or unauthorized use or removal of radioactive sources during all stages of management;
  • requirements relating to the verification of the safety and security of radioactive sources, through:

safety and security assessments; monitoring and verification of compliance; and the maintenance of appropriate records;

  • the imposition of appropriate penalties.”

AND WHEREAS, it is desirable to make further provisions for the protection of the public and workers from ionizing radiation:

NOW, THEREFORE, be it enacted by the President and Parliament of Zimbabwe as follows:



1    Short title and date of commencement

This Act may be cited as the Radiation Protection Act [Chapter 15:15].

                       2    Interpretation

In this Act—

“Authority” means the Radiation Protection Authority of Zimbabwe established by section three;

“authorisation” means any permission granted in the form of a registration or a licence granted by the Authority to a person who has submitted an application to carry out a practice of any relevant action;

“ Chief Executive Officer” means a Chief Executive Officer of the Authority appointed in terms of section six;

“ exposure” means any act or condition of being subject to radiation;

“facility” means any premises in which is located service which uses a radiation source;

“intervention” means any action to reduce or avert exposure or the likelihood of exposure to a radiation source which is not part of a licenced practice or which is out of control as a consequence of an accident;

“ionising radiation” means any electromagnetic or corpuscular radiation capable of producing ions, directly or indirectly, in its passage through matter;

“licence” means an authorization granted by the Authority on the basis of a safety assessment and accompanied by specific requirements and conditions to be complied with;

“member” means a member of the Board, including the chairperson;

“Minister” means the Minister of Health and Child Welfare or any other Minister to whom the President may, from time to time, assign the administration of this Act;

“practice” means any human activity that introduces additional sources of exposure or exposure pathways or extends exposure to additional people or modifies the network of exposure of people or the number of people exposed;

“prescribed requirement” means a requirement—

  • prescribed by regulations made under section twenty-two; or
  • prescribed by the Authority in any authorisation or any standard, norm or requirement imposed or notified by it under this Act whether by a code of practice or otherwise;

“radiation source” means any apparatus, substance or installation capable of emitting ionizing radiation.



                       3    Establishment of Radiation Protection Authority of Zimbabwe

There is hereby established an authority, to be known as the Radiation Protection Authority of Zimbabwe, which shall be a body corporate capable of suing and being sued in its own name and, subject to this Act, of doing anything that bodies corporate may by law perform.

                       4    Functions and powers of Authority

(1) The functions of the Authority shall be—

  • to issue standards and norms governing exemption, notification, registration and licensing of radiation sources and radiation protection and safety; and
  • to define in regulation standards and norms the exposures that are excluded from regulatory requirements on the basis that they are not capable of being subjected to regulatory control; and
  • to issue authorisations for the possession and use of radiation sources; and
  • to define in regulations and authorisations the detailed obligations to be placed on those who possess radiation sources; and
  • to conduct inspections and obtain performance information concerning radiation sources; and
  • to take such action as is necessary to enforce any prescribed requirements; and
  • to protect the health and safety of workers and the members of the general public; and
  • to accredit persons or suppliers of certain services or facilities necessary to enable licensees, registrants or notifying parties to comply with conditions or requirements imposed by or under this Act; and
  • to approve persons with specified radiation protection responsibilities; and
  • to ensure that adequate national arrangements for response to radiological accidents are established; and
  • to initiate, recommend or provide support for intervention, as appropriate; and
  • to advise on matters relating to the safety of radiation sources and the disposal of radioactive waste materials or irradiating devices; and
  • to establish and maintain registers of importers, exporters, manufacturers, users and operators of devices or materials capable of producing ionizing radiation.

(2) For the better exercise of its functions, the Authority shall have power, subject to this Act, to do or cause to be done, either by itself or through its agents, all or any of the things specified in the First Schedule, either absolutely or conditionally and either solely or jointly with others.

                       5    Board of Authority

  • There shall be a Board of the Authority which, subject to this Act, shall be responsible for formulating the general policy of the Authority and controlling its operations.
  • The Board shall consist of—
  • one person appointed by the Minister; and
  • one person appointed by the Minister from a list of not fewer than three names submitted by the Ministry responsible for energy; and
  • one person appointed by the Minister from a list of not fewer than three names submitted by the Ministry responsible for agriculture; and
  • one person appointed by the Minister from a list of not fewer than three names submitted by the Ministry responsible for the environment; and
  • one person appointed by the Minister from a list of not fewer than three names submitted by the Ministry responsible for education; and
  • the Dean of the Medical School at the University of Zimbabwe; and
  • the Director of the Department of Water in the Ministry responsible for rural resources and water development; and
  • the Director of Civil Protection referred to in section 3 of the Civil Protection Act [Chapter 10:06]; and (i) at least two other members appointed by the Minister after consultation with the President.
  • The chairperson and vice chairperson of the Board shall be members of the Board appointed by the Minister in consultation with the President.
  • The provisions applicable to the Board shall be as set out in the Second Schedule.

                       6    Appointment and functions of Chief Executive Officer

  • Subject to this section, the Board shall appoint, on such terms and conditions as the Board may fix, a person to be the Chief Executive Officer of the Authority.
  • No person shall be appointed as Chief Executive Officer and no person shall be qualified to hold office as Chief Executive Officer if he or she is not a citizen of Zimbabwe or ordinarily resident in Zimbabwe.
  • The appointment of the Chief Executive Officer shall terminate if he or she would be required in terms of subparagraph (1) or (2) of paragraph 3 of the Second Schedule to vacate his or her office had that provision applied to him or her.
  • The functions of the Chief Executive Officer shall be—
  • to be secretary to the Board;
  • to supervise and manage the Authority’s affairs;
  • to perform such other duties as the Board may determine or as may be conferred or imposed on him or her by or under this Act or any other enactment.

                       7    Radiation protection officers and staff of Authority

(1) The Authority may employ, on such terms and conditions as it may fix with the approval of the Minister—

  • radiation protection officers who shall act as inspectors; and
  • such other members of staff as may be necessary for the proper exercise of the Authority’s functions.

(2) Every radiation protection officer shall be furnished with a certificate of his or her appointment signed by the Board or any person authorised by the Board, and when visiting a place to which the provisions of this Act apply, shall, if so required, produce that certificate to the owner or occupier of the premises.



One Response

  1. Do staff wear dosimeter in Zimbabwe while on placement? I am curious to know as I have been told I can’t do my elective there if they don’t .

    Many thanks

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