The Committee met briefly to discuss the Committee’s rejection of the Education and Labour Relations Council’s Strategic and Annual Performance Plan. Members had expressed concern that the entity’s Annual Performance Plan had lacked defined targets and that they could not interrogate the issues because members of the Council’s Executive Committee had not attended the meeting. It was agreed that the Council would submit a revised Annual Performance Plan that would be aligned with the Strategic Plan. The Committee was scheduled to meet again on 7 May 2013. However, Members agreed that they should meet earlier- on 30 April 2013- because the Department’s budget vote was also scheduled for that day and it needed to finalise matters in case the Council’s report was rejected again.
Rejection of the Education and Labour Relations Council Strategic and Annual Performance Plan
The Chairperson informed the Committee that there was no presentation for this meeting. The Committee would instead discuss the issues that had been raised by Members during the previous meeting with the Education and Labour Relations Council (ELRC). The Council had presented its 2013 Strategic and Annual Performance Plan at that meeting.
Members had expressed concern and sought clarity on a few aspects. Two of the issues included the lack of defined targets and what role the Council played in the labour disputes and those involving children. The other concern was that the Executive Committee (ExCo) had not attended the meeting. Even though the administrative staff had attended, the ExCo, that was responsible for setting budgets and targets and therefore there was no opportunity for Members to interrogate these thoroughly.
The Chairperson recalled that the majority of the members who were present were of the view that the report should be rejected.
The Chairperson did not want a situation where the Committee would continually rejected something else after it had rejected the budget. She questioned the Annual Performance Plan (APP) presented by the ERLC. In her view, it was based mainly on the Strategic Plan and did not cover aspects relating to organisation’s annual performance. She was pleased that the Members noticed this issue as well and it was unhealthy for the Committee to continue with the review because the report could not be interpreted without proper targets.
The Chairperson suggested that the ELRC should further review the report and bring it back to the Committee within 14 days. There should be a proper APP with targets and the Strategic Plan should be aligned to the APP. The next meeting was schedule for 7 May 2013 when the Department of Basic Education (DBE) would present its budget vote. However, she agreed that the Committee should meet before that day as Members had collectively requested. It would be better if the next meeting was within 7 days to provide the Committee a chance to speak about the operational plan and to review the work that had been done thus far.
The Chairperson further stated that the DBE should assist the ELRC with oversight to ensure that it was conducting its mandate in a proper manner. She noted that Members had queries but this could not be addressed at this meeting.
Ms N Gina (ANC) noted that the next meeting would be convened on 30 April 2013 if the proposal to have another meeting within 7 days was accepted.
The Chairperson replied that she would have to consult before she could confirm the proposed date.
Ms A Lovemore (DA) stressed that she was a bit confused about how the issue of the proposed meeting was raised. Her point was that the meeting for 7 was scheduled for the same day as the budget vote debate.
Ms Lovemore was concerned about how the situation would look if it happened that the ELRC revised report was once again rejected. What would the implications be in terms of the budget allocation? She was therefore in support of having the meeting on 30 April.
Mr K Dikobo (AZAPO) recommended that there should be a record of who was present in the meeting.
The Chairperson noted that some Members still wanted to make input. She indicated that she would not allow this as nothing could be clarified at this point.
Apologies were made for Mr W Madisha (COPE), Mr N Kganyakgo (UDM), Mr Z Makhubela (ANC) and the Director General of the Department of Basic Education.
The meeting was adjourned.
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