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SOCIAL SERVICES SELECT COMMITTEE
11 June 2002
HEALTH DONATIONS FUND ACT REPEAL BILL: VOTING; BUDGET VOTE FOR SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: BRIEFING
Chair: Ms Jacobus (ANC)
Documents handed out
Health Donations Fund Act Repeal Bill [B20-2002]
Briefing on Social Development Budget Vote 2002/2003 to the NCOP.
Committee voted on the Health Donations Fund Act Repeal Bill which was unanimously agreed upon.
Director General of Social Development, highlighted the main areas of budget allocation in the department which included poverty alleviation, HIV/Aids, and other related programmes. Changes in budgetary allocations were focussed on over 2001/2002 and 2002/2003 financial years.
Health Donations Fund Act Repeal Bill [B20-2002]
Committee voted on the Health Donations Fund Act Repeal Bill. The committee agreed unanimously on the bill.
Director General of Social Development, Ms Angela Bester briefing
Priorities for 2001/2002
Ms Bester highlighted the 2001/2002 and then 2002/03 period in terms of performance.
She informed the committee that priorities for 2001/02 included improving social security as well as a pragmatic approach to poverty relief. Other priorities were enhancing the response to HIV/AIDS; transformation of welfare services; improving functioning of the department.
MTEF for 2001/02 was R 2 242 157 whereas for 2002/03 this was now R 409 261. She also pointed out that for 2002/03, the poverty relief allocation is R 100 000 000. The provincial MTEF allocation for 2000/01 was R20 929 000, 2001/02 was R23 781 000 and for 2002/03, this was R 28 055 000.
Social Security 2001/02
Social security for 2001/02 included an audit of infrastructure, close competition, establishing the monitoring, evaluation and audit electorate amongst other issues. There was also a report of the Committee of inquiry into comprehensive social security. Completed norms and standards for social security had also been completed. She informed the committee that the child support grant is broken down into provincial allocations. In this period the Eastern Cape got R149 953 000, KZN R 495 055 000 whereas Limpopo got R 300 392 000 respectively.
Social security 2002/03 improvement programme included a national campaign to register and pay all eligible beneficiaries, payment of arrears, implementation of the norms and standarda.
Welfare services for 2001/02 included the MINMEC Review of financing policy. children- a discussion paper and first draft if new Child Care act were achieved. Children awaiting trial were covered by the new Probation Services Amendment Bill. Regarding older persons, data collection for an audit of old-age homes, draft policy and legislation had been completed. On substance abuse she pointed out that an audit of 25 treatment centres has been conducted as well as a drafting of minimum standards.
For welfare 2002/03, priorities and activities included the transformation of welfare services, norms and costing of services and audit of services. For children, the Child Care Act, Child Abuse Strategy were formulated. The Youth Development strategy as well as the National Policy on Families had also been formulated.
Poverty relief programme for 2001/02 focussed on food security, HIV/Aids support, Women's income generation projects, older persons, social finance, youth in urban areas, disability. A new monitoring and evaluation system was also developed. A comprehensive audit was also in progress. For the 2002/03 year, poverty relief focused on the establishment of 416 new projects, the consolidation of existing projects as well as the documentation of good practices.
HIV/Aids programme for 2001/02 this included the allocation of R13.2 million , 90% of which was spent and the balance was committed. She also pointed out that they commissioned a State of the SA population report focusing on HIV/Aids, also research on development indicators for monitoring the impact of HIV/Aids. For 2002/03, the HIV/Aids programme included the expansion of home-based care/community based care, as well as to improve the information on children and families affected.
Non-profit organisations (NPO) 2001/02 activities included the registration of NPO's wherein 6287 applications were received and as a result 4813 registration certificates were issues. For the 2002/3 financial year, a service delivery audit of National Councils as well as to intensify capacity building of emerging NGO's and CBO's was the priority.
Population and Development
Population and development programme in 2001/02 had commissioned a state of the SA population report for 2001. They also trained 751 government planners in HIV/Aids. For 2002/03 the finalisation strategy on the role of local government on population and development had been issued.
Cross-cutting priorities for 2002/03 included partnerships in business for financial and technical assistance to programmes.
Please refer to the briefing on Social Development Budget Vote 200/2003 to the National Council of Provinces slide presentation for further details
Mr. D Kgware (ANC) asked the DG if poverty relief was also emphasised in the provincial allocations?
Ms Vilakazi (IFP) asked the DG about the R2 billion to be dispensed to beneficiaries as to how the department would carry out this exercise?
Ms C Nkuna (ANC) asked if the department took account of the cross-provincial migrations in terms of its allocations. How fast was the processing of applications for registration as Non Profit Organisations.
The chair extended the beneficiaries question by asking how far back did the department go in paying the beneficiaries?
On provincial allocations, for poverty alleviation, the DG pointed out that they put up some teams to help the provinces in developing the business plans to find out how they managed such budgets.
The issue of social facilitation teams to help communities in this regard was also important, according to Ms Nwendamutswu, a departmental official.
Regarding the R2 billion for beneficiaries, Mr. Makewane, also a departmental official, pointed out that letters have been sent to these people. Allocation did take into account migration factors and this operated according to the population numbers.
Mr Makewane stated in terms of the processing of applications, the application would be faster if all the relevant details were there. He pointed out that capacity problems, which varied according to provinces meant that some places had faster times for processing the applications like a month whilst others could take about 3 months. Lastly as to how far back they paid, he pointed out that they paid from the date of application in the period between 30 April 1998 and 30 November 2001.
The chair asked what kind of assistance was available to child-headed families. She also asked about the issue of poverty alleviation as to what happened where some departments did not know how to administer these funds due to capacity problems as it was not their core function, citing the example of Foreign Affairs.
Dr Nel (NNP) asked about substance abuse, if the UN sponsored programme would be extended to other provinces than the pilot project area.
Mr Theron, a departmental official pointed out that the substance abuse programme would after its initial phase be extended to other provinces as well.
On the issue of poverty relief funding, the DG pointed out that all departments affected were currently looking at ways of administering these funds more efficiently.
Ms Nwendamutswu pointed out that child-headed families were very situational and often community intervention was prioritised providing food and shelter. However, she also pointed out that there were formal interventions from the department's side where they had institutions for keeping these children as well as partnerships with other departments like the department of education where educational needs of the children were met.
The meeting was adjourned.
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