Committee Report on 2012 Adjustments Appropriation Bill [B32–2012]: adoption

Standing Committee on Appropriations

15 November 2012
Chairperson: Mr E Sogoni (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Committee briefly met to consider and adopt its report on the 2012 Adjustments Appropriation Bill. Members made several technical amendments to the report as well as a few substantive changes.

In its recommendations, the Committee stated that the Minister of Public Works must put pressure in place to ensure job creation targets set for the Expanded Public Works Programme were attained and submit to Parliament quarterly progress on the compilation of the Asset Register.

It was further recommended that the Minister of Communications must ensure that the Department of Communications expedite the process of finalising the national broadband strategy and the rollout of broadband infrastructure, that the critical posts as that of Chief Financial Officer be filled expeditiously, that the Department reports on the necessity for introduction of the 112 Emergency Call Centre given the regular rollover of funds allocated to this project and that the Department of Communications report to Parliament quarterly on the implementation of the Turn-Around Strategy.


Meeting report

Committee Report on 2012 Adjustments Appropriation Bill [B32–2012]
The Chairperson tabled the report for consideration and invited Members to comment.

The Chairperson suggested that the R30 million referred to on page 1 and 2 be deleted.

Mr Tshepo Masoeu Content Advisor explained that the first one referred to the National Revenue Fund, and the second one to the allocation to the Economic Development.

The Chairperson pointed out a minor grammatical amendment in the last paragraph on page one.

Mr M Swart (DA) deleted the word “their” in the second paragraph on page 2, then inserted “and” in the fourth last line of the same paragraph.

The Chairperson deleted the word in “2009” in the third last paragraph on page 2.

Mr Swart deleted “however” in the third paragraph on page 3; he made another minor amendment on page 4.

Mr L Ramatlakane (COPE) pointed an error on the bottom of page 4 “122” was supposed to be “112 call centres”.

The Chairperson felt that the Committee should comment on the Turn-Around Strategy of the Department of Communications.

Mr G Snell (ANC) suggested the inclusion of the following sentence “The Committee noted that the Department had implemented a Turn-Around Strategy”.

The Committee agreed to put the sentence in the Committee findings.

Mr Swart made a minor grammatical amendment in the first line of the first paragraph on page 6.

Mr Ramatlakane referred to the third last paragraph on page 6 and added the wording “due to the ad-hoc of nature for funding” after “R29 million”.

Mr Snell explained that the Department of Public works overspent because certain things needed to be funded but could not be budgeted for.

The Chairperson deleted the last sentence of the 1st paragraph on page 7.

Mr Ramatlakane suggested that the Committee should raise its concern regarding the process of registering assets which had been going on for years without conclusion.

Findings
The Chairperson asked Members to focus on the findings in the report.

The Chairperson referred to paragraph 4.2 and made minor technical amendments to it.

Mr Swart referred to the same paragraph and inserted the word “overall” between the words “declare, savings”; he then inserted the words “concern” after “particular” and substituted “of” for “in”.

The Committee noted that the Turn-Around Strategy for the Department of Communications had been introduced in paragraph 4.3.

The Committee noted that the original paragraph 4.3 was changed to 4.4.

The Committee noted that the original paragraph 4.4 was changed to 4.5 and the words “and administration capacity of Departments” were inserted before the word “impact”

In respect of paragraph 4.5, the Committee remained concerned that the compilation of the asset register by the Department of Public Works had been going on for years without completion despite multiple agencies being appointed with no results.

Recommendations
The Chairperson asked Members to focus on the recommendations in the report.

The Chairperson deleted the original paragraphs 5.1.1 and 5.1.2

The Committee then drafted recommendations as follows.

5.1 National Treasury should consider incorporating a clause into the Appropriation Bill to enforce planning as a requirement for infrastructure programmes.

5.2 The Minister of Public Works must:
5.2.1 Put pressure in place to ensure job creation targets set for the Expanded Public Works Programme were attained.

5.2.2 Submit to Parliament quarterly progress on the compilation of the Asset Register.

5.3 That the Minister of Communications must:
5.3.1 Ensure that the Department of Communications expedited the process of finalising the national broadband strategy and the rollout of broadband infrastructure.

5.3.2 That the critical posts as that of Chief Financial Officer be filled expeditiously.

5.3.3 That the Department reports on the necessity for introduction of the 112 Emergency Call Centre given the regular rollover of funds allocated to this project.

5.3.4 that the Department of Communications report to Parliament quarterly on the implementation of the Turn-Around Strategy.

Mr Ramatlakane moved for adoption and Mr Swart seconded the motion, and the Report on 2012 Adjustments Appropriation Bill [B32–2012] was adopted with amendments.

The meeting adjourned.


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