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The aim of this report is to summarise the main events at the meeting and identify the key role players. This report is not a verbatim transcript of proceedings.
LAND AND AGRICULTURE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE
22 APRIL 2002
FINALISATION OF PLANNING PROFESSION BILL AND APPLICATION FOR LEVY BY NAMC IN WINTER CEREAL INDUSTRY
Chairperson: Adv. S.P. Holomisa
Documents handed out:
Amendments agreed to the Planning Profession Bill
Presentation by the National Agricultural Marketing Council
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The Planning Profession Bill was not finalised in this meeting, as there were still legal and technical issues outstanding. The Department requested that the Committee give them three weeks to consider those issues, which the Committee agreed to.
The second item on the agenda was the application of levy by the National Agricultural Marketing Council in the winter cereal industry. The Committee wanted to know how the NAMC budget was used and how much of this money had been used to develop emerging farmers from the previously disadvantaged communities. The NAMC promised to draw up some statistics for the Committee that would show how much has been used in the different programmes of the NAMC, and what difficulties they were experiencing in terms of implementing them.
Planning Professions Bill
The Chairperson said there were amendments that had been agreed upon in the last meeting on the Bill, and those amendments were incorporated in the consolidated version of the Bill. He said there were legal and technical problems that the Department encountered, and that it was advisable for the Committee to allow those problems to be solved before any comments could be made.
Dr T. Makgalemele from the Department told the Committee that they incorporated all the amendments as suggested by the Committee in the last meeting. However, she indicated that those amendments had been compiled and were included in a document called "Consolidated Planning Profession Bill".
She said the amalgamation of tertiary institutions resulted in changes of certain issues in the Bill, especially clause 13, which deals with the registration of persons. The Department wanted to reconsider the process of consultation concerning clause 13, as there was an argument that too much power had been given to the Council. She said that everything else in the Bill was up to date. She asked the Committee to give them more time (at least three weeks) to reconsider the technical issues in the Bill.
The committee agreed to give the Department the time it requested to reconsider the Bill, as it would be useless for the Committee to discuss it whilst there might be what the Chairperson called "consequential amendments" to the Bill.
Application by the NAMC for levy in the winter cereal industry
Ms L Moolman, Legal Advisor to the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC) presented the application for levy in the winter cereal industry. She said 80% of their budget has gone to research and transformation in the cereal industry and more than 10% would be put aside to deal with emerging farmers in the cereal industry.
Ms B. Ntuli (ANC) asked how much percent in the budget of NAMC was used on emerging farmers.
Ms Moolman replied that it varied according to the different projects, but indicated that the budget used to be unspecific; for example, it dealt with all programmes that were meant to promote the industry. For instance, there was a new research that focused on emerging farmers. There was a lot of attention paid to emerging farmers, and she repeated that the percentage was not less than 10%.
Ms Ntuli said it was important to know how much the NAMC intended to spend on emerging farmers. It was not enough to say it was not less than 10%.
Ms Moolman said it would be useful for the Committee to ask the NAMC to draw up the statistics for the Committee that show how much has been done and what differences there are in the various programmes.
Dr E. Baloi (ACDP) said he had a different interpretation of the 10%. He thought Ms Moolman was saying that the percentage was not less than 10%, meaning that it could be more than 10%.
Mr B. Radebe (ANC) wanted to know whether the 10% would address the backlog of the historically disadvantaged farmers and what type of problems of disadvantaged farmers the NAMC would like to address by this 10%.
Ms Moolman agreed that Dr Baloi's interpretation was correct, and she added that genuine research was being conducted on how much would be needed by emerging farmers in the cereal industry. Information from all sectors, including Parliament, would help in identifying the problems.
Ms Ntuli said they were not really answered in their questions on emerging farmers. She said they would need a detailed report on what was taking place on emerging farmers.
Mr S. Farrow (DP) also added that the Committee would really need that report. Ms Moolman conceded that a statistical report should be prepared on the different activities of the NAMC.
Mr D. Hanekom (ANC) said people got the impression that research does not benefit previously disadvantaged farmers, which was a wrong perception. Research is very important in agriculture, including emerging farmers who cannot succeed without it. Research is very important and should not be regarded as if it is not for the benefit of the disadvantaged.
Mr P. Nefolovhodwe (AZAPO) said his concern was how that research was going to be accessed by the disadvantaged people whom it is targeting. He said most scientists did research, but the information was available only for the few. What about the majority of people who were meant to benefit from the research?
Mr M. Maphalala (ANC) said the documents spoke of two things, research and transformation. He said according to his knowledge, transformation deals with development and that was why the question of upgrading the standard of emerging farmers was asked repeatedly in the meeting.
Ms Moolman said that she would be very disappointed if the Committee did not approve the application.
The Chairperson read the report and asked the committee to adopt it. The Committee approved the application by the NAMC for levy in the Winter Cereal Industry.
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