Mental Health Care Amendment Bill [B39B-2012]: adoption

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Health

11 November 2013
Chairperson: Dr B Goqwana (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Chairperson welcomed the officials from the Department of Health. The Parliamentary Legal Advisor said that the only change proposed in the National Council of Provinces was in line 8 of 72A, section 1, on the delegation of powers, to include the word "competent". Members accepted the amendment and the Committee Secretary then read the Committee Report.

Members then adopted Minutes of meetings held between March and November 2013 and discussed the option of meeting with the Eastern Cape Health Crisis Coalition and the MEC in the Eastern Cape if the date for the meeting was before the elections. It also depended on how much Parliament would offer to pay for the Members to visit the Eastern Cape. A Member also asked who would be selected from the Committee to meet with the Pan-African Parliament. The Chairperson said that he would be the connection between the Pan-African Parliament and the new Portfolio Committee. Members would be elected from that new Portfolio Committee.
 
Members thanked the Chairperson for being their leader during their term of office. The Chairperson said that the past four years had been good and he thanked Members for accepting him as their leader. The next Portfolio Committee on Health would complete part of the work initiated by the Committee. He also thanked the secretariat and wished everyone the best of luck, whether they stayed in Parliament after their term, or left to go elsewhere.
 

Meeting report

Consideration of the Mental Health Care Amendment Bill
The Chairperson said that the Bill that had been returned to the Portfolio Committee for one small correction after it had been to the National Council of Provinces (NCOP). The past four years had been good and he thanked Members for accepting him as their leader. The next Portfolio Committee on Health would complete part of the work initiated by the Committee. He welcomed the four officials from the Department of Health.

Adv Gary Rhoda, Parliamentary Legal Advisor, said that the only change proposed in the NCOP was in line 8: 72A in section 1 on Delegation of powers, to include the word "competent". The Department of Health and the Parliamentary Legal Office found this to be legally in order. 

Ms M Segale-Diswai (ANC) said that she accepted the inclusion of the word “competent” and was seconded by Ms B Ngcobo (ANC).

Ms Maydiyah Solomons, Committee Secretary, read the Committee Report on the Mental Health Care Amendment Bill [B39B-2012], NA, s76, dated 12 November 2013: The Portfolio Committee on Health, having considered the Mental Health Care Amendment Bill, dated [B39-B2012], s76, classified by the Joint Tagging Mechanism as a section 76 Bill and referred to it, reports that it has agreed to the Bill.

Adoption of Outstanding Committee Minutes
Committee Minutes dated 6 March 2013
The Chairperson tabled the minutes for consideration.

Adoption of the Minutes was proposed by Ms R Motsepe (ANC) and seconded by Ms C Dudley (ACDP).

Committee Minutes dated 12 June 2013
The Chairperson tabled the minutes for consideration.
Ms Ngcobe moved for adoption of the Minutes, with corrections, and was seconded by Ms T Kenye (ANC).

Committee Minutes dated 16 October 2013
The Chairperson tabled the minutes for consideration.

Ms Motsepe moved to adopt and was seconded by Ms Segale-Diswai with the spelling correction.

Committee Minutes dated 23 October 2013
The Chairperson tabled the minutes for consideration.

Ms Segale-Diswai moved for adoption of the Minutes of the two meetings that day and was seconded by Ms Ngcobo.

Committee Minutes dated 30 October 2013
The Chairperson tabled the minutes for consideration.

Ms M Dube (ANC) moved for adoption of the Minutes and was seconded by Ms Motsepe.

Committee Minutes dated 6 November 2013
The Chairperson tabled the minutes for consideration.

Ms D Robinson (DA) noted that on the resolutions on page 3, the word "from" should be "form".

Ms Motsepe moved for adoption of the Minutes, with corrections, and was seconded by Ms Kenye.

General Discussion
Ms Segale-Diswai said that the Committee had not received feedback on the Luthuli plan.

The Chairperson said that the secretariat would enquire into the progress as the onus was on the Committee to follow up. Those in the Committee who were key in developing the plan had left the health portfolio for the social development portfolio.

Ms Robinson said that the Minutes of resolution 4 read that “select members of the Committee should form part of that meeting”. She asked which Members were selected and on what basis they would be selected.

The Chairperson said that the secretariat planned to write a letter to the Eastern Cape Department of Health to request that they meet the Committee together with the Coalition. Once they had agreed, it depended on how much Parliament would offer to pay for the Members to visit the Eastern Cape. Proportional representation would be selected for the delegation. The whip would decide who would attend from each party.

Ms Robinson said that when the Committee met with the Pan-African Parliament there was supposed to be an answer given to them within 24 hours as to who the Members of the small committee would be. She had not been informed on what resolutions the Chairperson had put forward.

The Chairperson said that due to the short space of time before elections, he had spoken to Ms J Kilian (COPE) about it and they decided that it would be cumbersome to choose the small Committee before elections. The Chairperson would be the connection between the Pan African Parliament and whoever came into the Portfolio Committee and people would be elected from that new Portfolio Committee.
 
Ms Segale-Diswai suggested that it should be noted that the Committee had decided that the Chairperson would be the link between the two. Ms Dube seconded the suggestion and added that the Committee had previously formally agreed that after the elections, the Chairperson would be the link.

Ms Ngcobo said that though all the issues were important, the new Portfolio Committee on Health would deal with the outstanding issues. Current Members would return only for the State of the Nation Address and Budget Debate. Since the Members’ term of office was ending on Friday, they would not have time for the Eastern Cape health crisis issue.

The Chairperson said that the Committee had agreed to meet the Coalition in the Eastern Cape, but should the Committee not be invited to visit the Eastern Cape before the elections, then the current Committee would not go there.

Ms Robinson supported the Chairperson, and asked if the Committee would be reconvening at all in 2014. The Committee was aware that the Eastern Cape was in a crisis and she would make the time to go there during the holidays. The Committee had given the undertaking to go.

The Chairperson ruled that the Committee had promised the Coalition that it would go there and the Coalition would not be concerned about elections. The secretariat would write to the MEC and it would depend on the date. If the MEC gave the Committee a date at the beginning of the year, the Committee would go. This was the last Portfolio Committee meeting on Health for the term, but the Committee was not closing and it may still have an emergency meeting.

Ms Kenye said that the Committee heard the Coalition say that the Committee was their only hope. Their plea had previously fallen on deaf ears for a long period of time.

Ms Dube said that there was no point in jumping the gun. If there was money and it was arranged by the Eastern Cape Department, the Committee would go. The Committee should work as a team and deal with the matter in the best possible way.

Members thanked the Chairperson for being their leader during their term of office. 

The Chairperson thanked the Members and secretariat and wished everyone the best of luck, whether they stayed in Parliament after their term or left to go elsewhere. 

The meeting was adjourned.
 

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