Committee Report on Minister of Police Report on Nkandla: deliberations

Ad Hoc Committee on Police Minister's Report on Nkandla

04 August 2015
Chairperson: Mr C Frolick (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Ad Hoc Committee on the Minister of Police Report on Nkandla did not adopt its final report. The Members differed on what the layout of the report should be and what the content should contain regarding specifics. ANC Members argued the report could not carry all the inputs Members made during the meetings. The report should reflect only the salient points because the committee minutes already state what the contributions of individual members are. It should merely present an overview.

Opposition MPs argued that the report should carry the specifics of what was discussed in the meeting. The report should indicate the subject of the discussion, and the deliberations of the meetings should indicate the specific points the ruling party raised and also note the concerns of the opposition.

The Chairperson referred the Committee to page13 of the Committee Report where he had indicated what the format of the report should be. Opposition members caucused briefly and agreed with the Chairperson's suggestion about format. The Committee agreed that the drafters should re-write the Committee Report according to the proposed format.

Meeting report

Committee Report on Minister of Police Report on Nkandla
The Chairperson took the Committee through the draft report, page by page.

Page 1
Dr P Mulder (FF+) stated he is not sure what the last paragraph means. He wanted to know if it is the opinion of the ruling party or the opposition that the “Report by the Minister of Police on the Security Upgrades at the Nkandla Private Residence of the President therefore served as the base document for consideration by the Ad Hoc Committee”.

Ms D Dlakude (ANC) replied that the Committee Report deals with the report of the Minister of Police.

Mr V Smith (ANC) indicated that Dr Mulder must forward alternatives about how to go about the report because it looks like each and every time he is going to ask whose that view is.

Dr Mulder said that could be done but Members would need to be given more time.

Ms L Maseko (ANC) stated that the heading of the Committee Report makes the Minister of Police Report the base document.

Mr N Singh (IFP) wanted to know who tasked the Minister. He said the Minister derived the report from the resolutions adopted by the National Assembly on 24 November 2014. He wanted to know if the Minister represented the cabinet when he tabled the report. He asked what the terms of reference were if that were the case.

Ms Dlakude said the Minister of Police Report is a response to the recommendations of the previous Ad Hoc Committee.

Mr Singh then suggested that the last paragraph be re-written because this document is not the only one that was requested. There were many others that were requested.

Page 2
Mr L Mbinda (PAC) suggested his name to be included in the list of Committee Members.

Page 3
Mr S Swart (ACDP) suggested that under the Committee Deliberations it must be stated that some Members of the Opposition felt that if they participated in this Committee, it would be legitimising the position of the ANC.

Page 4
Ms M Kubayi (ANC) asked the first paragraph to be re-worded.

Mr Singh suggested that the use of “he” and “his” should be replaced by the “Minister”.

Page 5
Mr Swart suggested that “Some members” on the last paragraph should be changed. He further suggested using “inter alia” as it is not necessary to capture all the things that are covered in the presentation because some members would deliberate on each and every line.

Ms Kubayi supported the idea.

The Chairperson asked members to focus on salient issues that should be reflected in the report and they should indicate how they want the insertions to be done.

Mr Smith indicated that what Mr Swart suggested should be changed to: “Members engaged with the Minister on the following…”

The Chairperson indicated that the drafters of the report were given the mandate to capture the salient points deliberated in a meeting, not to give a blow by blow account.

Ms Kubayi agreed with the Chairperson.

Page 6
Dr Mulder suggested on in (f) both points that Judge Schippers raised should be mentioned, and not only one point.

Mr Swart stated that it must be mentioned that the report of the judge spoke about the engagement with the Public Protector if a dispute arises.

Ms C September (ANC) suggested that the last sentence should be re-worded “inspection in loco”.

Ms T Mahambehlala (ANC) stated that the last sentence should indicate it was an “oversight visit”, not an “inspection in loco”.

Ms E Coleman (ANC) wanted to know if the residence of the President is called the “Nkandla Private Residence of the President or “Prestige Project”.

Mr Smith suggested that it be called Nkandla Project.

Dr Mulder suggested the Committee check for the correct name in the reports of the previous Ad Hoc Committee.

Ms Kubayi indicated that it must be remembered that within the Public Works there is a Prestige Portfolio.

Dr Mulder stated that the Prestige Portfolio refers to the properties of the state. The property under discussion is private.

The Chairperson suggested it be called “Nkandla Private Residence of the President”.

Page 7
Mr Swart wanted to know the meaning of “technology” in (a).

Ms Kubayi indicated that should be ignored because the technology in that room is not working.

Adv G Breytenbach (DA) suggested that it should be called the “Police Technology Control Centre”.

The Chairperson stated that it was agreed during the visit to refer to that room as the “reception” because it is not fit to be called a “Visitors Centre”.

Ms Kubayi suggested that the office should be capacitated and an insertion should be made about that.

Mr Singh wanted to know what (g) means when it states that, “The amphitheatre was not an amphitheatre”. He suggested that (n) should be changed to, “The high costs of construction…”, it would make sense because “The construction” cannot be viewed “as a looting of state resources”. It is the “high costs of construction” that could be viewed “as a looting of state resources”.

Mr Smith stated it is not an amphitheatre. He said the opposition is doing an injustice to the report. Members tend to choose words that suit them, and change the ones they do not want. He asked if it is fair if he could then introduce other items that are not in the report, if Members continue to treat the report in this way.

Mr Swart agreed that Mr Smith could add whatever salient points he feels are missing in the document.

Dr M Motshekga (ANC) suggested Members to stick to the guidance that the Chairperson has given in conducting the meeting.

Dr Mulder stated that whatever is said by Members should be in inverted commas then.

The Chairperson said the Committee Report should reflect what was discussed in the meeting. If Members follow this format, the situation is going to end up saying this one said this and that one said that. It is impossible to capture everything that was discussed in the meetings. The report has to capture the salient points. It is impossible to capture everything that Members said. It is important to look at the purpose of the report first; agree to what was discussed; and look at what the Members deliberated on. He directed the Committee to page13 of draft Committee Report about what he suggested the report should look like.

Mr Swart asked if the opposition could caucus for a minute to see if they agree with the Chairperson.

After being given permission to caucus, Mr Smith indicated that the opposition agrees to the idea of the Chairperson.

Ms Kubayi suggested that the drafters should re-write the document according to the proposed format.

This suggestion was accepted by the Committee.

Committee Minutes
29 July 2015 Minutes
The Chairperson took Members through the document, page by page.

Dr C Mulder (FF+) indicated that 3.5 on page 3, the Committee did not agree to the idea that the swimming pool would be used to extinguish fire only but it could be used for recreational purposes as well.

Ms M Kubayi (ANC) proposed the use of “some members” instead of being specific and state “ruling party members” or “opposition members”.

Dr Mulder, on page 5, indicated that the Committee never agreed not to meet Mr Makhanya, the architect, though he is before the courts.

Ms Kubayi said that was an issue of caution because he is before the courts already. The Committee had cautioned if it was okay to have him before the Parliament seeing that the matter is before the courts.

Mr S Swart (ACDP) suggested that it should be stated that “some members cautioned about the calling of Mr Makhanya”.

The minutes were adopted with corrections.

30 July 2015 Minutes
Mr Swart, on paragraph 3 on page 2, said it should be stated that the proposal to invite the Public Protector was done by him though he is not a voting member but Mr Singh, as a voting member, took the proposal on his behalf.

Mr Singh mentioned that it should be indicated in the report that Mr Swart seconded him.

Ms Kubayi suggested that the “objection made by the ruling party” should be corrected on paragraph 3 on page 3.

Mr L Mbinda stated he was present in the meeting but his name is not mentioned.

The minutes were adopted with corrections.

The meeting was adjourned.


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