The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the recommendations in the Budgetary Review and Recommendation Report.
Members were mainly concerned about the lack of monitoring and evaluation being conducted by the Department on its entities. The Members recommended that the Department must create a strong monitoring and evaluation strategy and that all programmes and entities should be examined. Members were also concerned about the high vacancy rate and wanted the Department to re-examine its organogram to ascertain if it needed all those positions to function effectively.
The Committee decided to meet again on 01 November 2011 to vote on the updated Report.
Election of Acting Chairperson
In the absence of the Chairperson, Ms T Sunduza (ANC), the Committee unanimously appointed Ms L Moss (ANC) to chair the meeting.
Arts and Culture Budgetary Review and Recommendation Report (BRRR)
The Acting Chairperson stated that the Committee had until 01 November 2011 to adopt the BRRR. She then requested Members to discuss and propose recommendations that should be added to the report.
Ms P Duncan (DA) stated that while the Department of Arts and Culture (DAC) had received an unqualified opinion from the Auditor-General’s office, it must work harder on managing the budget constraints. DAC should ensure that the policies and legislations were followed. She further argued that the DAC’s high vacancy rate of 27% which included the 4.9% funded vacancy rate should be addressed immediately. The Department should re-examine its organogram to ascertain if it needed all those positions to function effectively. She also wanted the DAC to provide more details in the variances section of the Annual Report.
Dr A Lotriet (DA) recommended that the DAC must increase the Monitoring and Evaluation of its subsidiary entities. She urged the Department to examine the quarterly reports that were submitted by the entities.
Ms F Mushwana (ANC) reiterated the need for more monitoring and evaluation and wanted DAC to allocate appropriate resources to ensure that the entities were fulfilling their intended targets. She argued that the some of the targets set out by DAC were unrealistic and advised the Department to make realistic assessments of the goals they want to achieve.
The Acting Chairperson stated that the all the programmes launched by DAC had too many positions that were filled by ‘acting’ appointees. She recommended that the DAC needed to fill the senior management positions with permanent postings.
The Acting Chairperson then stated that it was unacceptable to have the DAC put any programmes on moratorium. The other member concurred with the Chairperson’s comments.
Dr Lotriet wanted the DAC to examine the funding of each programme and cross reference it with the achievements of individual programmes. She argued that often the entities set out targets that were unattainable and it was the DAC’s responsibility to ensure that the targets set out by the entities were viable.
Ms Mushwana stated that it was the responsibility of DAC to ensure that it had a monitoring and evaluation tool and that it was being implemented across all programmes.
The Acting Chairperson along with other Members emphasised that the DAC must work harder to create more jobs and contribute a larger portion to the country’s GDP. Moreover, she suggested that the Committee must organise joint meetings with the Portfolio Committee on Tourism to assist DAC in its job creation strategies.
Dr Lotriet requested that the Committee Secretary re-write the BRRR with all the recommendations and then it could be tabled for a vote.
The Chairperson supported the comments and decided to hold the vote on the BRRR on 01 November 2011.
The meeting was adjourned.
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