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PUBLIC ACCOUNTS STANDING COMMITTEE
6 March 2002
REPORT BACK BY WORKING GROUPS
[This is a transcript of the meeting, produced by the Public Accounts Committee Secretariat.]
African National Congress
Mr L Chiba
Mr DM Gumede
Ms NL Hlangwana
Mr BW Kannemeyer
Ms PK Mothoagae
Mr BZ Nair
Mr VG Smith (chairperson)
Mr P Gerber
Mr NS Bruce
Mr CM Lowe
New National Party
Col A Blaas
United Democratic Movement
Dr GW Koornhof
Apologies: Mr NH Masithela
In attendance from the Office of the Auditor-General: Mr C Botes
The hearing with the department of Water Affairs and Forestry and Parliament will take place during the second week after the March/April recess.
The Auditor-General should be invited to give the Committee a report on the delay in the tabling of Annual Reports.
Members with questions relating to the Defence hearing should liaise with the members of group one.
2. Matters arising
The chairperson should find out from Dr G Woods what the progress is regarding the letter sent to the Speaker on the processing of Treasury Replies.
The secretariat should draft a letter for signature by the chairperson to the Speaker inquiring why the report on Parliament has not been referred to the Committee.
The secretariat should draft a letter for signature by the chairperson inquiring why the UIF report has not been tabled.
The chairperson will report back on the interview process for the post of researcher next week.
Welcome and opening by the chairperson.
3.1 Group report back
a. Group one: Mr L Chiba
There will not be a hearing on the Foreign Affairs audit report, instead a letter regarding unauthorised expenditure will be sent to the department. The hearing on Defence will take place on 20 March 2002. On miscellaneous reports i.e. the Gender Commission, President's Fund and Guardian's Fund the questions have been submitted.
A letter to the Treasury regarding the separation of the Secret Services Accounts from the Treasury account has been drafted. The Justice draft resolution has been tabled and additions have been incorporated.
Mr Botes added that the amended Justice draft resolution has been emailed to all the members yesterday. Mr Blaas reported that the group is evaluating the replies from the SAPS.
Dr Koornhof stated that Dr Woods wrote a letter to the Speaker regarding Treasury reply process and wanted to know what the progress is on the matter. The chairperson said that he would follow up the matter with Dr Woods.
The chairperson stated that report backs needed to be interrogated and added that groups need to highlight matters on which they want decisions to be taken. The chairperson further reported that a letter on the separation of the Secret Services account from the Treasury account is ready for signature, and another letter inquiring whether there are guidelines on the hosting of conferences is also ready for signature.
Mr Nair said that members should verify that the Treasury Account still incorporates the Secret Services account before a letter is sent out.
Dr Koornhof proposed that all members should go through the Defence report before the hearing. Mr Kannemeyer said that members with questions should submit them to the relevant group.
The Committee decided that if members have questions regarding the hearing they should submit them to group one.
b. Group two: Ms NH Hlangwana
The group decided that there would be no hearing on Housing. The matter on the Housing Trust Fund and the shares thereof will be included in the resolution. The report on Parliament has not been referred to the Committee. Mr Dlamini reported to the group that the Clerk of Papers informed him that he is waiting for the Speaker to approve the referral. There should be a hearing on Parliament. There should also be a hearing on Water Affairs and Forestry. Hearings on both Parliament and Water Affairs and Forestry should happen on the second week after recess and both hearings should happen on the same day.
Mr Kannemeyer proposed that there should be a letter to the Speaker inquiring why the report on Parliament has not been referred to the Committee.
The Committee agreed that a letter be sent to the Speaker inquiring why the report on Parliament has not been referred to SCOPA.
Mr Gerber said that a Bill has been tabled for the disestablishment of the Housing Trust and wanted to know if there is any indication as to whom the assets are sold to. Mr Kannemeyer replied that the issue forms part of the questions to the department.
c. Group three: Mr D Gumede
The Land affairs draft resolution has been tabled for consideration by the Committee.
The group is formulating questions on the following reports: RDP, SAFCOL, National Parks Board, TETA, Marine Living Resources Fund, IDC, Advisory Council on Innovation, FASSET, Agricultural Research Council, CCMA, State Library and Council for Geoscience.
The group is not able to set down a date for a hearing on Public Works because the latest report has not been tabled. The group will decide whether there will be a hearing on Transport after receiving evaluations to replies. The group would decide on a need for a hearing on the UIF report once the latest report is available.
The matter of the legal advise on Transnet emanating from last week's meeting should be followed up with Dr Woods. The Secretariat should write a letter inquiring about the tabling of the UIF report and Public Works.
The Committee decided that the Auditor-General be invited to give the Committee a report on the delay in the tabling of annual reports.
The chairperson reported that the panel on the post of researcher met last week and came up with a shortlist of four names. Interviews will take place on 11 March 2002. The panel will report back to plenary after the interviews.
Interviews for the post of researcher will take place on Monday. Work groups will also meet on Monday. On Tuesday and Wednesday the Committee will have report backs from the groups, resolutions, report on the overseas trip, budget and feedback from the Auditor-General on the delayed reports.
The meeting adjourned at 11h25.
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