Joint Investigation Report into Strategic Defence Procurement Packages: adoption of Committee Report

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Justice and Correctional Services

02 December 2001
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JUSTICE AND CONSTITUTIONAL AFFAIRS PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE

JUSTICE AND CONSTITUTIONAL AFFAIRS PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE
3 December 2001
JOINT INVESTIGATION REPORT INTO STRATEGIC DEFENCE PROCUREMENT PACKAGES: ADOPTION OF COMMITTEE REPORT

Chairpersons:
Adv J de Lange

Relevant Documents
Joint Investigation Report into the Strategic Defence Procurement Packages
Committee Report on Joint Investigation Report (see Appendix)

MINUTES
The Chairperson noted that the Committee had in fact fulfilled its mandate to consider Chapter 13 which dealt with the contracts of the Strategic Defence Packages. It was however not the validity of the contracts that the Committee had to consider but rather the formal aspects thereof.

Adv de Lange consequently presented the Committee with a report in which the contents of Chapter 13 were noted. The report in addition contained two recommendations by the Committee:
- the processing of the Prevention of Corruption Bill should be speeded up
- the National Director of Public Prosecutions should submit a progress report to the Committee regarding further possible criminal investigations and public prosecutions emanating from the Procurement packages.

The Committee unanimously adopted the report.

Adv de Lange concluded by informing the Committee that there are 40 pieces of legislation that they have to consider in the New Year. He was unsure as to when the 'crossing of the floor' legislation is to be referred to the Committee as Cabinet has still to finalise it.

The meeting was adjourned.

Appendix:
Report of the Portfolio Committee on Justice and Constitutional Development on the Joint Investigation Report into the Strategic Defence Procurement Packages (the Procurement packages), dated November 2001:

The Portfolio Committee, having considered the matters in the Report falling within the parameters of its portfolio, and in particular Chapter 13, and having to report on the relevant findings and recommendations before 6 December 2001 (Announcements, Tablings and Committee Reports, p. 1390-1), reports as follows:

1.The Portfolio Committee noted the contents of the Report, in particular Chapter 13 and the finding in paragraphs 13.4 and 14.1.15, in response to the view expressed by the Committee on Public Accounts that the main (prime) contracts did not appear to be well prepared, namely that the drafting of the prime contracts was of a high standard and that such contracts were found to be well defined and understandable, without any instance of particularly clumsy language having been found to have been used.

2. The Portfolio Committee noted that the National Director of Public Prosecutions has initiated certain public prosecutions, which may be linked to the Procurement packages.

3. The Portfolio Committee noted that the National Director of Public Prosecutions has publicly indicated that investigations into possible criminal charges in connection with the Procurement packages are continuing, which may lead to further public prosecutions in this regard.

4. The Portfolio Committee noted that the Report does not contain any specific recommendations relating to matters falling within the parameters of its portfolio, including Chapter 13.

5. The Portfolio Committee recommends that
(i) the draft Prevention of Corruption Bill, presently being processed by the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development and the relevant Interministerial Committee, be introduced into Parliament, as a matter of priority, in order to address possible loopholes in our law identified in the Report, in particular those relating to various conflict of interest situations and to extend the current laws pertaining to corruption and related offences of dishonesty; and
(ii) the National Director of Public Prosecutions, on a mutually agreed to date in February, submit a progress report to the Portfolio Committee, regarding further possible criminal investigations and public prosecutions emanating from the Procurement packages.

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