Committee Report on Environmental Affairs Budget; Committee Report on its 2016 Operational Plan; Second Term Committee Programme

Environment, Forestry and Fisheries

19 April 2016
Chairperson: Mr S Makhubele (ANC) (Acting)
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Meeting Summary

Documents handed out:
2nd Term Committee Programme
Committee Report on Environmental Affairs Budget
[All Committee Reports available under Tabled Committee Reports once published on the ATC]

The Committee met to consider the draft report on the strategic plan and to adopt minutes.

The Chairperson, Mr J Mthembu (ANC), had left the Committee, having been appointed Chief Whip of the majority party. Mr S Makhubele (ANC) was nominated Acting Chairperson.

It was agreed to reschedule the adoption of the Strategic Plan and Budget vote report task to Friday 22 April 2016 as some Members felt there was not enough time to discuss the draft report, which required their full attention to have gone through it thoroughly. Members agreed to take the report home and meet on Friday at 9am for an hour to adopt the draft budget report. 

The Committee went through its draft Strategic Plan page-by-page, making amendments, and agreed to the changes made.

The minutes of Committee meeting held on 12 April were adopted with minor amendments.

Final consideration was of the draft Second Term Committee Programme. The Acting Chairperson urged Committee members to be present for the meeting scheduled for Friday 22 at 9 am for the adoption of the draft budget report. 

Meeting report

Election of Acting Chairperson

Ms Tyhileka Madubela, Committee Secretary, said the Committee Chairperson, Mr J Mthembu (ANC), had left the Committee, having been appointed Chief Whip of the majority party. She therefore called for nominations for an Acting Chairperson for the meeting as stipulated in the rules. 

Mr S Makhubele (ANC) was nominated Acting Chairperson

Opening remarks
The Acting Chairperson reminded Members that the Committee was supposed to deal with the Committee programme last week but were unable to do so because some Committee members had to depart early for other commitments. He recommended that members adopt the programme so that they had a concrete idea of what needed to be done in the second term of the year, which should act as a guide.

The date of the budget vote debate was approaching and the Committee needed to discuss the draft budget plan before that. The meeting would be quite brief to give Members time to look at the draft budget report and would only consider the report and adopt it at the next meeting.  He proposed Members meet for an hour on Friday 22 April in the morning to discuss adoption of the report, once everyone had a thorough look at the draft budget report. The Strategic plan would be discussed and adopted at the meeting because the strategic plan was their guide and consisted of all that the Committee would be working on for the 2016/17-2019/20 period.

Environment Affairs Budget Report
The Acting Chairperson asked the Committee Members if they were prepared to discuss the draft budget report or if they preferred to merely read the conclusions and observations or to go over the whole report.

Mr P Mabilo (ANC) proposed that the draft report be discussed page by page at the meeting and Ms J Edwards (DA) agreed.

The Acting Chairperson proposed that the adoption of the draft budget report be moved to Friday 22 April to give members time to go over the report and rather read the observations and conclusions of the report instead of the entire document as this may lead to making mistakes and it would be better to give the report the serious attention that it deserved and needed.

Ms P Ntobongwana (EFF) supported the suggestion, as there was not enough time to discuss the entire report.

The Committee agreed to only going over the Committee observations of the report and to meeting on Friday at 9am where the adoption of the report would take place.

Mr Mabilo was asked to read the Committee Observations on the draft report

Ms H Nyambi (ANC) suggested an addition of a bullet point on the last sentence of the Committee observations page; she argued that the sentence should have a bullet point.

Members corrected some typographical errors made on the conclusions and observations on the draft budget report.

Committee Strategic plan 2016/17- 2019-20
The Acting Chairperson asked if Members had time to read the document and Mr Mabilo said that he had not gone through it.

The Acting Chairperson then suggested that the Committee go through the plan page by page and made amendments where necessary so that they adopted the plan before the end of the meeting. He led the members through the plan and highlighted an error made on the second paragraph on line four and five of the first page and asked the Content Advisor, Dr S Watts, to take note of the typos. He then went back to the first paragraph, line seven and suggested an addition of the word ‘that’.

Ms Edwards noted that on page two of the plan some of the words were typed in a different font as well as different size and the plan would look more professional if the font was the same. There continued to be corrections of spelling mistakes made on the plan.

Ms Nyambi asked if she could be given time to go through the plan and for the Acting Chairperson to slow down as the Committee agreed that some Members did not go through the document.

The Acting Chairperson said he would allow for one minute to pass through after reading however they would continue and would try to pull Ms Nyambi in.

Mr Mabilo raised a point of correction and said that on page 11, line three the word “impact” did not have a plural and suggested that “impacts” be corrected to “impact”. He then referred to page 18, the first sentence “...and deepen representation and participation at international…” and suggested that another word like strengthen be used instead of deepen. On page 23, 3.2 he suggested that the sentence be rephrased because the word “…access to allow” was the same thing and rather just simply edit it to” allow”.

The Acting Chairperson said he would allow for Members who did not have time to read the plan  but would take that Members had The draft strategic plan 2016/17- 2019-20  agreed on the draft plan with its’ amendments and would just adopt the plan on Friday.

Adoption of minutes
The draft Committee minutes dated 12 April 2016 that dealt with the Strategic Plan of the Department as well as the Annual Performance Plan were then discussed. The Acting Chairperson noted the incorrect spelling of his surname on page two.

The Acting Chairperson asked Ms Nyambi to read the resolutions on page four of the document and noted a spelling error. He reminded Members that when reading money, they should always remember to mention the currency, especially the Rand as there might be a possible confusion.

The minutes were adopted with an amendment.

Committee 2nd Term programme
The Acting Chairperson said that this was a quarter that would be a bit difficult to deal with as they had lost two weeks, one on the week after Members returned from Easter recess as some Department members were unavailable, and the second because of the urgent sitting of the House. He suspected that two more meetings would be missed as there would be preparations for the budget report debate and these cancellations would affect the sittings of the Committee. He pleaded with members to all be present for the meeting on Friday as it was very important and would be useful for everyone as there was no other day available where Members could meet before the budget debate on 3 May 2016. 

Members discussed their trip to Port Elizabeth scheduled for 13 May.

The report was adopted.

The meeting was adjourned



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