Reawakening-the-giant initiative: Minister of Sport and Recreation briefing; Update on SASREA Appeal Board appointment process

Sports, Arts and Culture

01 March 2016
Chairperson: Ms B Dlulane (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Committee met to be briefed by the Department of Sport and Recreation (SRSA) on the ‘Reawakening-the-giant’ initiative, and to be updated on the Safety and Sports and Recreational Events Act (Sasrea) Appeal Board appointment process.

Mr Fikile Mbalula, Minister of Sport and Recreation, said SRSA had been busy processing the Sasrea Appeal Board appointment process, taking into account due diligence and vetting requirements. He assured the Committee that that matter would be finalised in the next few days. 

He said that on 22 January 2016 he had written to the Chairperson to request her to prioritise a discussion on the media allegation made by the DA that he had misled Parliament in his reply to a question relating to government expenditure arising from the private visit of Mr Floyd Mayweather to SA. SRSA was maintaining that the ‘Reawakening-the-giant’ tour of Mr Mayweather was a privately organised and funded initiative, which had been brought to SRSA as a partnership proposal that would stimulate interest in the sport of boxing and to serve as a catalyst for the revival of local boxing. SRSA had seen an opportunity through the initiative to bring local boxing back into the mainstream sports discourse and spotlight in SA. SRSA’s financial involvement had been limited only to specific items and activities that would have a lasting impact on local boxing, and not on the total amount for the tour.

SRSA said that the first question asked by the DA had been Question 400 in question paper number 2; order paper NW482E of 2014. Therein SRSA had been asked to give a breakdown of departmental expenditure on the Mayweather tour. In its response, the Department had highlighted that it had spent money on synchronised programmes. The amount quoted in that regard had been R304 950, which had been used for branding that had been used later by Boxing South Africa (BSA) and the South African National Boxing Organisation (SANABO). Further disclosure was that SRSA had incurred a further expenditure of R171 000, which had been for the purchasing of tables at a fundraising gala dinner where the boxing fraternity in the country had been hosted so that it could participate.

After netwerk24 had requested information in line with the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA), SRSA had disclosed all the above figures, which amounted to a total of R475 950, as disclosed in the responses to Question 400 originally. When network24 published the combined figure, the DA had called a press conference to say SRSA had misled Parliament. Essentially, the DA statement implied that SRSA had been forced through PAIA to make those figures available to the public, which in itself was misleading, as the figures had already been deposited with Parliament and by virtue of that had become public knowledge.

SRSA had been asked a subsequent question by Mr D Bergman (DA). Question 1 835 had questioned the costs of R171 000 and the specific amounts spent on each person.  It had also been said that the benefits of Mr Mayweather’s visit were unquantifiable. SRSA said that that was not true. It had not been asked to quantify the benefits, and in fact one question that had been asked was how much had been fund-raised at the SRSA gala dinner at Emperor’s Palace?  SRSA had responded that the gala dinner had been organised by a private company on a risk bid, and the total sum raised had been R875 000. That was the preliminary net figure based on the auction items and the pledges by attendees at the event.

SRSA had also responded on the benefits, which included the work done by the Department at the Dube boxing gym, such as equipment, boxing rings and all the other items that had been purchased for local boxing clubs.

The DA denied it had accused the Minister of lying, as it had prefaced its press statement in the opening paragraph by saying he had “possibly misled” Parliament. At issue had been what appeared to have been conflicting responses from SRSA on the extent of its financial support for Mr Mayweather’s visit.

The Minister said that SRSA’s greatest displeasure on such matters was when Members of Parliament asked questions, only to charge thereafter that as a department it had misled Parliament, as that was not a small charge. The question on Mr Floyd Mayweather had been exhausted thoroughly and SRSA had categorically and substantively dealt with the allegations pertaining to SRSA paying Mr Mayweather money. Most of the work that Mr Mayweather had done for SRSA had been done in kind.

Meeting report

Chairperson’s opening remarks

The Chairperson welcomed the Minister of Sport and Recreation South Africa (SRSA), Mr Fikile Mbalula, together with his delegation and all the guests that were present. She outlined the agenda, saying that Mr S Malatsi (DA) had written to her asking her to request Minister Mbalula to come and account to the Committee on the Reawakening-the-giant initiative of 2014. The Minister had also requested an audience with the Committee, as Mr Malatsi had in the print media asserted that the Minister had lied to the National Assembly (NA) when answering questions related to that initiative, and as the Minister he wanted to set the record straight. The Minister had also put that request in writing to the Chairperson’s office. 

   

Update on Sasrea Appeal Board appointment process

Minister Fikile Mbalula said he had received a communiqué from the Speaker’s office towards the end of 2015 about the appointments. SRSA had since been busy processing the matter, taking into account due diligence and vetting requirements. He assured the Committee that that matter would be finalised in the next few days. 

Pre-briefing remarks by the Minister

He said that on the 22 January 2016 he had written to the Chairperson to request her to prioritise a discussion on the media allegation made by the DA that he had misled Parliament in his reply to a question relating to government expenditure arising from the private visit of Mr Floyd Mayweather to SA. SRSA was maintaining that the Reawakening-the-giant tour of Mr Mayweather was a privately organised and funded initiative, which had been brought to SRSA as a partnership proposal that would stimulate interest in the sport of boxing, and to serve as a catalyst for the revival of local boxing. SRSA saw an opportunity through the initiative to bring local boxing back into the mainstream sports discourse and spotlight in SA. SRSA’s financial involvement had been limited only to specific items and activities that would have a lasting impact on local boxing, and not on the total amount for the tour.

SRSA had then engaged Mr Mayweather’s management for him to visit all the boxing-loving communities of SA, particularly the clubs where he had a large following. Because of the short nature of his visit, he could visit only the Dube Boxing Gym in Soweto. During his visit, Mr Mayweather had accompanied Minister Mbalula to a Departmental programme hosted at the Dube Boxing Gym on 15 January 2014.

SRSA had taken the discussion as an extraordinary step to clarify the above falsification of the record of SRSA’s intelligence by the DA. The DA had asked one question and repeated it eight times during the plenary, where it had not received the answers it desired. Following this, the DA had gone on to brand SRSA with lies to the sport sector and SA public. The DA had and was continuing to be mischievous in dealing with this imaginary public purse expenditure regarding the Reawakening-the-giant initiative expenses. The DA had been running a media campaign supported by the petty bourgeoisie and some moles in the media. Secondly, the DA had been issuing hollow threats about the party requesting the Chairperson of the Committee to summon the SRSA to the Committee so that the DA could escalate its falsehoods around two invoices and two corresponding payments purportedly already in the public domain. In order to escalate its misinformation campaign, the DA was using the most disconsolate spirit with an uneasy conscience.

SRSA was before the Committee that day to set the record straight. Before SRSA presented, the Minister asked the Chairperson to afford the DA an opportunity to prove to the sitting how it had concluded that the Minister had misled Parliament.

The Chairperson allowed Mr Malatsi to brief the Committee, as requested by the Minister.

Briefing by Mr S Malatsi (DA) on ‘Reawakening-the-giant’ initiative allegations     

Mr Malatsi said that at the core of the discussion was that initial response from SRSA and subsequent responses to the questions about the initiative, were inconsistent with each other. All other sundry matters about the DA’s motives were distractions. Originally SRSA’s responses to the first question in plenary were that ‘the Department had not spent money on Mr Mayweather or his visit to SA. In that regard, there was no cost incurred by SRSA in respect of Mr Mayweather’s attendance of the Dube Gym gala event held at Emperor’s Palace’. A response to a follow up question was about flight details, whereas the argument had never been about that or transport arrangements. Therefore those “scarecrow” arguments had to be removed from the discussion. Over a period of time, the response had evolved to include that the payment related to a table that had been bought for boxing activities that had occurred on the day of the event. That then contradicted the original response, because the entire cost would not have been incurred had Mr Mayweather not been coming to SA.

 

The argument therefore was not about whether money went directly into Mr Mayweather’s pocket. The Minister was correct in his explanation that SRSA’s budget could not cover even a minimum of Mr Mayweather’s appearance fee.

The issue was that SRSA was never clear in its responses from the outset and in arguing that there was no money spent on the individual or his visit.  That was withholding critical information that made a substantial difference to SRSA’s later argument that the actual money was towards events that would benefit boxing after the visit, because even if the discussion ventured into probing how boxing benefited, the benefits were unquantifiable. To date, there had been no provisional report of what those benefits had been. However, that was not the central argument.

If the cost incurred had not been for that specific event at Dube, what had been its purpose? There should have been full disclosure from the outset and in its absence, why had there been no detailed breakdown to separate SRSA’s costs from its partners?

The Chairperson called on the Minister to respond to the question in Mr Malatsi’s briefing.

The Minister said the Director-General would deal with the question related to SRSA, and he would follow-up thereafter.

SRSA’s response

Mr Alec Moemi, Director-General (DG), SRSA, said that the issues that had been raised had indicated that the responses of SRSA that had been submitted by the Minister to Parliament regarding the Reawakening-the-giant initiative had been inconsistent.

 

He said that SRSA begged to differ with Mr Malatsi, and as far as the matter was concerned, the DA had asked Minister Mbalula non-questions in their entirety regarding the Mr Mayweather tour.

The first question asked by the DA had been:

  • Question 400 in question paper number 2; order paper NW482E of 2014. Therein SRSA had been asked to give a breakdown of departmental expenditure on the Mayweather tour.

Mr Moemi said that SRSA had disclosed in subsection 2 of SRSA’s response that it had spent money on synchronised programmes. The amount quoted in that regard had been R304 950, which had been used for branding that had been later used by Boxing South Africa (BSA) and the South African National Boxing Organisation (SANABO). Further disclosure included that SRSA had incurred a further expenditure of R171 000, which had been for purchasing of tables at a fundraising gala dinner where the boxing fraternity in the country had been hosted, so that it could participate at the dinner.

After Leanne George of Netwerk24 had requested information, in line with the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA), SRSA had disclosed all the above figures, and as the Committee would be aware the overall amount totalled R475 950, as disclosed in responses to question 400 originally. When network24 published the combined figure, the DA called a press conference to say SRSA had misled Parliament. Essentially the statement by the DA implied that SRSA had been forced through PAIA to make those figures available to the public, which in itself was misleading as the figures had already been deposited with Parliament and by virtue of that had become public knowledge.

To confirm that SRSA had submitted the information and receipt thereof was confirmed by Parliament SRSA had a letter from the Clerk of Papers in Parliament confirming receipt of documents in response to question 400. For further confirmation to that effect, Mr Moemi referred the sitting to a subsequent question SRSA was asked by the DA.

  • Question 1835 which had been asked by Mr D Bergman (DA) which read: ‘with reference to question 400 on 16 September 2014 on who had been the funder that had organised and funded the Reawakening-the-giant tour of Mr Floyd Mayweather Jr, which had been brought to SRSA as a partnership proposal that would stimulate interest in the sport of boxing...that his department had incurred costs of R171 000 and the specific amounts spent on each person.  

Mr Moemi said that the quote confirmed that by that time the DA was fully aware that SRSA had responded in full and that the amounts had already been disclosed and thus, in question 1835 SRSA was being asked relative to those specific numbers, which were in the possession of the DA.

He said there was an issue emerging that SRSA had originally said that it had not spent any money on the Mayweather tour. That appeared to be misleading as well, because SRSA had indicated to the contrary and there were specific questions in that regard, contrary to what Mr Malatsi was saying. Those questions related to the cost of flights and accommodation, to which SRSA had responded that it had incurred no costs in that regard.

  • Question 1609 related to what the DA had included as part of its press statement. However, what the party did was extrapolation. Essentially then, the DA borrowed an answer to an irrelevant question for what then informed its conclusion.
  • In 1609 the question was with reference to SRSA’s reply to question 502 on 2 September 2014: ‘what amount was spent by the Minister’s department on his own travel; on Floyd Mayweather’s travel for the attendance to the Dube boxing gym event; and to the gala dinner held at Emperors Palace? 

In SRSA’S response, the Department had given the government garage rates, and the Committee knew that state vehicles operated on that basis. There were monthly tariffs that departments were given to calculate and arrive at specific wear and tear costs, and SRSA in that regard had provided those specifics in terms of the Minister’s kilometers to Soweto and back to his office, and also to attend the gala dinner and back to his official residence.  All that had been disclosed so that for Mayweather, the figures were also disclosed -- which amounted to nothing -- as the response in question 502 (2) indicated that categorically. Frontier Sport, which was SRSA’s partner on that tour, had provided for the ground transport for Mr Mayweather.

The DA press statement then had deliberately quoted a portion of these responses and extrapolated to mislead the public.

It had also said that the benefits of Mr Mayweather’s visit were unquantifiable. This was again not true. SRSA had not been asked to quantify, and in fact one question that had been asked was: how much had been fund-raised at the SRSA gala dinner at Emperor’s Palace?  SRSA had responded that the Gala dinner had been organised by a private company on a risk bid, and the total sum raised had been R875 000. That was the preliminary net figure based on the auction items and the pledges by attendees at the event.

SRSA had also been asked what the benefits were, and that had also been responded to. That included the work done by SRSA at the Dube boxing gym, which also included equipment, boxing rings and all other items that had been purchased for local boxing clubs.  It would be unfair to say that was unquantifiable, however. SRSA had never been asked to provide that information because if that had happened, the information could have been given.

After the Mayweather tour, SRSA had commissioned an independent company, Repucom South Africa, a trusted adviser and partner in sports and entertainment intelligence, to look at what had been the value which SRSA had derived from its partnership on the Mayweather tour. The report was available for perusal. However, the quantifiable exposure by media and also the work that the tour had done in the revival of boxing as a sport was in excess of millions. SRSA was ready to share that report to show that the tour was planned responsibly and financially calculated in a manner that was prudent to saving state resources so as to leverage the sport of boxing and its turnaround in SA.

Therefore all the issues that were being raised that SRSA had been inconsistent in its responses were not true because from the outset the Department had disclosed everything it had been required to disclose.

It was unfortunate that the entire hullabaloo had been about information that had been expediently submitted to Parliament.

As far as netwerk24 was concerned, SRSA would follow whatever avenues were available to it legally.

Minister Mbalula said that SRSA’s greatest displeasure on such matters was when Members of Parliament asked questions, only to charge thereafter that as a department it had misled Parliament, as that was not a small charge. The question on Mr Floyd Mayweather had been exhausted thoroughly and SRSA had categorically and substantively dealt with the allegations pertaining to SRSA paying Mr Mayweather money. Most of the work that Mr Mayweather had done for SRSA had been done in kind.

Strangely, the Williams sisters, Serena and Venus, had also been to SA in recent years and similar questions had never been asked about them.

SRSA could certainly leave all the records it had brought with the Committee, which would prove that at no point was the Department avoiding pointed questions and that as a result of that it had peddled lies repeatedly to the public.

What netwerk24 had not been aware of, when it had said that SRSA had lied, was the fact that Mr Malatsi had asked a pointed question to which he had received a specific answer, as well as to all the following questions.

Minister Mbalula recalled that even Goebbels, who had been a Hitler era propagandist, had said that if one repeated the same thing long enough it became the truth in the minds of the masses. Therefore the assertion that Mbalula had misled Parliament would have to have been heard at the ethics committee. Though he was running a small ministry, his staff had no issue with compiling the information that had been required by the media through PAIA. The DA MPs in the Committee knew very well that SRSA had no qualms with coming to account on difficult questions, which generally came from the DA, so he was taken aback by the accusation that SRSA was lying when MPs had the facts. 

The Minister submitted that at no stage did he or SRSA withhold information pertaining to the Mayweather tour and the costs that were incurred.

Discussion

Mr Malatsi said that seeing that all the questions were on the tour, it could not be valid to insinuate that the responses used in whichever form, or the way they were used after their submission, were unrelated to the original question. Consistency was important on the basis of responses being made specifically to answer specific questions. Therefore the argument about extrapolation and that the information had then been used expediently was not logical, because the core subject remained the same throughout the entire list of questions. Indeed, the travel and accommodation arrangements for Mr Mayweather were irrelevant and the DA in Parliament or elsewhere had never argued that as an issue.

 

The basis of possible misleading regarding information was that MPs had asked questions, relying on SRSA to respond fully and in detail, and that had then placed the responsibility on SRSA to indicate any supporting details that were relevant to a specific question. That would then make whatever available information become a broader reflection -- if SRSA felt that that information had been expediently used in different contexts. That was just a technicality which was beside the point. The point was actually that everything SRSA said on record would be used, irrespective of whether it was in paragraph one and then paragraph nine.

 

Mr Malatsi said there had been salient neglect around the whole issue regarding exact words used. The DA statement had read: ‘possibly misled’. Had the substantiations and explanations that the Committee was receiving at that time been said unambiguously in the first place, there would have never been a need for clarity-seeking questions.

The responses in 400 had not been in dispute, but there had been ambiguity in the substantiation that came later. For example, to say that branding had occurred during the tour could mean that it was for Mr Mayweather’s tour, and if it had been for the Jabu Mahlangu soccer tournament, that would have never been contentious. It could not be that because the expenses were incurred on an event-based system that they could be dissociated from the overall tour.

The matter of quantifiable benefits, which had an over-emphasis from SRSA, was a matter of later contestation as it had not formed part of the original debate and the benefits that he was referring to were the long term benefits to boxing, because the fund-raised money was an immediate benefit.

What remained was what needed to be done, as SRSA had felt aggrieved over the re-publication of its own information and the questioning of that information. Regarding what had just been shared by SRSA and what had been shared previously in Parliament, he felt that the inconsistency was still there. It was not a stand-off for SRSA to feel aggrieved that the DA had strategically used information provided in good faith, as it was easy to seek recourse in that regard. The DA felt it had acted within the ambit of its obligations as an opposition party. MPs could not be prescribed to as to how they were supposed to ask questions, as the onus of asking lay within the curiosity of the asking MP.

The Chairperson said that eventually the Committee had to take a decision on the matter and from what Mr Malatsi had just said, it seemed he was still dissatisfied.

Mr S Ralegoma (ANC) said that the Committee could not work according to what was in print media because even at that time, the discussion was around questions posed by the DA. He was satisfied with SRSA’s explanation on how matters had evolved from the initial question to date. He was putting on record that the Committee was also satisfied, and regarding the allegation of lies by the Minister, he was recommending that Minister Mbalula exercise his rights by opening a case with the ethics committee about the allegations of misleading the House pertaining to Mr Mayweather’s tour in 2014.

Ms D Manana (ANC) said that Mr Malatsi had divided the Committee to the extent that it had become a committee of sheriffs summoning SRSA. The Reawakening-the-giant initiative, as explained by SRSA and including its benefits, had indeed done much for the sport in the country and therefore the accusation about misleading the House was quite serious, and MPs had to be cautious because unsubstantiated allegations were dangerous. Ms Manana also supported Mr Ralegoma’s sentiments.

Mr D Bergman (DA) said the Committee had to keep sight of the fact that the meeting had been a request to hear from Minister Mbalula as to whether he had misled the House or not. Mr Malatsi had also clarified that there could have been a ‘possibility’ that the House had been misled. It was strange then that MPs were being prescribed as to how to ask questions, and that the Committee was resolving to advise the Minister about approaching the ethics committee in that regard. There were enough problems without the Committee becoming political in its portfolio. What the DA required from Minister Mbalula was approachability, accountability and transparency. He certainly appreciated the fact that Minister Mbalula had availed himself and was approachable and open to discussion, but the Committee had only so many tools in its arsenal, which included questions, motions and summoning its Minister.

Mr S Mabika (NFP) said that what he understood was that money was used by SRSA during Mr Mayweather’s visit. He did not want to be tempted to relate Mr Mayweather’s visit to the revival of boxing in the country, seeing that he did not see the need for Mr Mayweather to be involved in the transformation of boxing in SA, as most of the challenges faced by BSA were leadership-orientated. The Committee had to agree that had Mr Mayweather not been in the country, the money spent would not have been spent the way it had been.

Mr Malatsi said that it was extraordinary that an MP could prescribe to other MPs how they were supposed to do their oversight. More bizarre was that a Member of the Committee would recommend and advise a Minister who had sufficient advisors that a Member of the same committee should be dealt with individually outside of his membership of the committee. He said that that behaviour represented a fundamental misunderstanding of the role that MPs of the Opposition were supposed to play at the committee level, regardless of what party lines prescribed the role of MPs to be.

The Chairperson said that she thought the meeting had been called for clarity-seeking questions, and as Mr Malatsi had clarified that he had never categorically said Minister Mbalula had misled the House, it was incumbent on Members to be cautious when dealing with print media, as it was wont to misquote MPs.  If Members were still split about the substantiation given by SRSA, they had to state that. The Committee did not seem to be together on a resolution about the explanation.

Minister Mbalula said that there was no dispute about the expenditure by SRSA, and that was not the core of its argument. The argument was about the misleading of Parliament by Minister Mbalula. If the account by SRSA did not settle the dust, SRSA could be taken to the nearest court. To say that Mbalula had lied to Parliament, knowing that the answers were before Parliament, the DA had to quantify that in terms of perception. Everywhere else he went and spoke, it would remain in the minds of South Africans that he, as Minister Mbalula, had lied to Parliament. The only people he would follow up on were those that had written lies about him in the print media and not MPs, because that was not his job.  

From that ‘possibility,’ as alluded to by the DA membership of the Committee, SRSA had given clarity unambiguously. Saying something about the Minister outside of Parliament was something the Minister could respond to through a press release, but to then threaten that you would haul him before a Committee he was accountable to, that was a different ball game. Moreover all political deployees in Parliament were MPs and they were all guaranteed freedom of speech. He certainly could not force MPs to accept the explanations, true though they were, and that there had been ambiguities beforehand. Over and above all that, the questions had been answered in sequence, and there were no inconsistencies in how they had been answered from the outset.

Possibly what had happened was that the Committee had been overtaken by events when netwerk24 had published stale information that Parliament already had. It was unfortunate that the newspaper was not aware that Members had that information.  

The Minister cautioned the Committee to not be swayed by news publications when they knew the facts first hand.

Mr Moemi said that indeed, in paragraph one of the 16 January DA statement, it had said that Minister Mbalula had ‘possibly misled’. However, paragraph five and six of the same statement, the tone had changed from ‘possibly misled’ to categorically stating that SRSA had actually misled. In paragraph five, it stated: ‘His department has been misleading the public and Parliament’. Then in paragraph six, it went on to say: ‘the Minister has gone to great length to deny it until he was compelled by law to reveal the truth’. That, in itself negated what Mr Malatsi had said and highlighted the inconsistency about the DA statement as it went further, because it had begun with a caveat that had an escape clause with ‘possibly misled’. As the reader went on reading, he/she would have been misled to believe that information had been concealed and that lies had been told.

SRSA was not being prescriptive about how questions had to be put to it but equally, the freedom to answer those questions had to have a reciprocated and respected right. It could not be expected, as was being suggested, that when a question was specific requiring a yes or no response, the SRSA had to answer all other related issues pre-emptively, because the issues had been related to the tour.

He had been asked as the accounting officer of SRSA about expenditure during Mr Mayweather’s visit, and he was on record in Hansard, and even in the Portfolio Committee, in which his responses had been exhaustive in contextualising all and sundry issues surrounding that visit.

It would be misleading the Committee to say that SRSA would not have spent the money it had spent, had Mr Mayweather not come to SA. That money would have been spent, and to be fair, SRSA had spent much more on boxing and BSA than what had been spent during that specific tour.

Was SRSA supposed not to have taken that opportunity and not to have spent money on its pre-planned programmes? In its response to 400, it had said: ‘Reawakening-the-giant tour of Mr Mayweather Jr had been a privately organised and funded initiative; which had been brought to SRSA as a partnership proposal that would stimulate interest in the sport of boxing and to serve as a catalyst for the revival of local boxing. SRSA saw an opportunity through the initiative to bring local boxing back into mainstream sports discourse and spotlight in SA. SRSA’s financial involvement had only been limited to specific items and activities that would have a lasting impact on local boxing and not on the total amount for the tour’.

Had Mr Mayweather agreed to SRSA’s request to come to Langa in Cape Town, then the amount of equipment bought for Langa and Mdantsane would have been included as an amount spent on synchronised programmes. That equipment was still handed over anyway, without Mr Mayweather’s presence. Even the branding at Dube was to be used by BSA and the Repucom report proved the effectiveness of SRSA’s leveraging on that Mayweather opportunity, as he had allowed SRSA to use his face temporarily. Moreover after peeling off of that face, behind it were the BSA and SANABO logos.

Mr Moemi said it was important for the Committee to read the DA’s statement entirely, as the motive to distort was clear as one went further on reading. In that regard, as the accounting officer, he would request that if there were still inconsistencies in SRSA’s response, could those please be pointed out clearly.

The Chairperson said she was satisfied that SRSA had responded to all that Mr Malatsi had requested an account of. The Committee was always courteous and considerate when debating legislation and matters of transformation, but when it came to media publications it was seemingly becoming a standard practice that somehow those publications wanted to determine the Committee’s programme. She was certainly not in support of party politics within the Committee and whatever Ms Manana may have said about Mr Malatsi was of no consequence, because as the Chairperson she was impartial. She asked who was not satisfied with SRSA’s explanation.

Mr Malatsi reiterated that he was still dissatisfied, but this was not an unhealthy situation as there had been so many variables that had emerged during the exchange of views at that meeting.

The Chairperson said that those Members who were still dissatisfied could approach her to suggest how that could be resolved.

Minister Mbalula said he was leaving the meeting with a clear conscience that he had responded to all matters pertaining to the Reawakening-the-giant initiative. However, should insistence persist on the side of the motion holder, he also had options in the realm of Parliamentary processes, as he was not going to continue to entertain frivolities. SRSA certainly had no intention of taking the matter further than it had done at the meeting.

The Chairperson accepted that the Minister had avenues to explore if the matter was pursued beyond the meeting. 

Mr Ralegoma said the Committee was satisfied with the explanation pertaining to Mr Mayweather’s tour.

The Chairperson thanked the ministerial delegation, and the Committee then considered its minutes.

Consideration of Committee minutes

The minutes of 16 February 2016 were adopted without amendments.

Ms Manana asked whether the minutes of the 23 February 2016 had been captured using a new reporting style for minutes.

Mr M Mabika (NFP) emphasised that it was concerning, because the minutes reflected presentations only and no discussion by the Committee.

The Chairperson said that the minutes would be referred back for rewriting, and the meeting was adjourned.  

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