Higher Education Amendment Bill [B36-2015]: Final clause by clause deliberations

Higher Education, Science and Innovation

20 April 2016
Chairperson: Ms Y Phosa (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Committee convened to go through the clauses of the Higher Education Amendment Bill [B36-2015], with input from the legal advisors from the State Law Advisor, Parliament and the Department of Higher Education and Training. A Member of the DA had proposed certain amendments to clauses 22 and 28 and the Committee dealt with these before moving on to the rest of the Bill.

Clause 22 proposals included an extended timeframe from 60 days to 90 days, and it was explained that this would enable the Department of Higher Education and Training to deliver better, and Members agreed to that proposal. However, the majority were not in favour of the DA's proposed amendments to clause 28, which required that administrators must report in writing to the Minister on a number of issues upon the termination of their term. The point was made that as a matter of practice, such reports were done in any event and the requirements listed in the proposed new subsections (4) and (5) were too prescriptive. The majority of the Committee rejected those proposals.

The Committee then moved on to clause by clause deliberations. It was noted that, for the purpose of these deliberations, the numbering as it appeared in the Bill as originally tabled would be used, although it was noted that a new clause 36 was being inserted. In the original Bill there had been no amendments to section 65B of the principal Act, but when the Committee deliberated on the requirements for private institutions, a decision was taken that the existing Act’s section 65B should also be brought in as a new clause. It would now be incorporated into the B Bill.

All clauses, with or without amendments, were agreed upon with the exception of following clauses:- Clauses 1, 16, 25, 26, 28, where the DA lodged objections, and clause 37, where both the DA and EFF had objected. Their objections would be noted. The Committee discussed the procedure and agreed that it would consider and vote upon the entire Bill, and the revised Memorandum, at the meeting on 4 May.

Members adopted the minutes of 13 April, expressed their thanks and good wishes to a member of the Committee staff who would be leaving, and spoke to correspondence received. Representatives of TETA and the Construction SETA would be asked to attend a Committee meeting.


Meeting report

Higher Education Amendment Bill[B36-2015]: Latest version: Clause by clause deliberations
he Chairperson noted that this meeting would continue the deliberations on the clauses of the Higher Education Amendment Bill (the Bill), following on from earlier discussions on the content of the clauses. The Committee would be voting on the Bill on 4 May 2016, but today the parties would give their indications on the clauses. Everyone was in agreement with the procedure. She said she looked forward to meaningful engagement and pleaded that everyone rise above political party lines and focus on the legislation that would take the education system to greater heights in South Africa. It was important to keep the best interests of the higher education system in mind.

She tendered the apologies of the Minister, who was attending a Cabinet meeting, and several Members of the Committee. In the absence of two DA Members, Mr M Walters (DA) was welcomed, and told that he could participate fully as a Member in this meeting.

The Chairperson noted that the Content Adviser had indicated that the Committee would be permitted to vote on the clauses, and then on the Bill overall, on the same day. She noted the agreement of the Committee to work on this basis, although the advice had been received quite late.

Mr M Walters (DA) stated that if there were objections to certain clauses, Members should be able to express them.

Ms J Kilian (ANC) agreed with Mr Walters, saying that in terms of the NA Rules, this could be done. Moreover, the report that must be compiled has to specify each amendment that was considered or rejected, if an amendment bill, other than a redrafted bill, was agreed on. It must specify each amendment rejected by the Committee if a redrafted bill was agreed on. She agreed that, as Mr Walters suggested, the Committee should go through the clauses, the Chairperson must pose a question if there are any objections, and if there are, the clause can be discussed and a vote taken on that clause. Then the concerns can be captured in order to comply with Rule 251. If it was not a unanimous report, it must specify in which respect it was not agreed upon.

The Chairperson thanked the Members for their input and noted consensus from all Members on the procedure to be followed. Mr Y Cassim (DA) had said at a previous meeting that he would redraft amendments, and he had made a submission. His submission would be considered as a first step.

Clause 22
The Chairperson said that the first submission addresses clause 22(2) and proposes the following wording:
 “the Minister must, as soon as practicable and not exceeding 60 days of receiving the report referred to subsection (1), provide a copy of the report referred to in subsection (1) to the council concerned, table the report before the National Assembly for consideration by the relevant committee and publish such report in the Gazette.”

She asked that Members express their views.

Advocate Boshoff, Chief Director: Legal and Legislative Services, Department of Higher Education and Training, asked the Committee to consider the possibility of the proposed timeframe of 60 days being extended to 90 days. The report needs to firstly go through an evaluation by the Department and then be tabled. 90 days was in line with usual practice and it would ensure compliance with all issues coming from the report.

Ms J Kilian (ANC) asked for clarity on Mr Cassim’s proposal, namely, whether he was suggesting that the  the current provision in clause 22 be treated as subsection (1) and therefore introducing a new subsection (2). If so, then the entire clause will be new. She asked Mr Walters to clarify what (2) meant, and asked whether the National Assembly should not also receive the report in 90 days.

In terms of the 90 day period, it was asked whether the National Assembly should receive it. She asked Mr Walters to clarify what subsection (2) meant.

The Chairperson said that Parliamentary procedure dictated what happens when a new subsection is introduced, and she asked for clarity on this point.

Ms Vuyocazi Ngcobozi, Parliamentary Legal Adviser, said that if a new amendment or clause was suggested, the Committee needed permission from the National Assembly. That would apply in the current case.

Mr Sisa Makabeni, State Law Advisor, Office of Chief State Law Advisor, said that as long as the amendment does not deviate from policy and introduce anything new in substance, the Committee is entitled to look at the revised clause.

The Chairperson confirmed that as a result, it would not be necessary that the amendment now suggested had to go the way of the Parliamentary permission process.

Mr Makabeni agreed, saying that only if new policy was being introduced would this need to go via Parliament.

Ms Kilian concurred. She drew Members' attention to NA Rule 249(3)(a) – which she read out. It said that the Committee must report on the subject of the Bill to the National Assembly. If it is a Bill amending provision of legislation, the Committee may seek the permission of the National Assembly to amend other provisions of that legislation. She said that if a section was already being amended, there was nothing to stop the Committee from amending it further . This clause was already served in the original draft Amendment Bill, and therefore could be amended further.

Mr Walters agreed. He said that as the original Bill was worded, section 47(2) reads: “the Minister must as soon as is practicable, provide a copy of the report referred to in section (1) to the Council concerned and publish such report in the Gazette.”  Mr Cassim had suggested that the Council should amend this to subsection (2) and he pointed out that only the underlined words are being inserted. These underlined words were: “but not exceeding 60 days of receiving the report referred to in subsection (1)” and “table the report before the National Assembly for consideration by the relevant committee.”The motivation for that would be that this empowered Parliament generally to apply its mind. Mr Cassim was trying to make the process more accountable. He said that he did not believe it was contentious.

The Chairperson asked whether there was consensus on extending the 60-day period to 90 days.

Ms Kilian said that while there was no objection in principle, she did want to know why it was necessary to publish the report in the Gazette, when there was an independent assessor. If there was a governance problem, it was important that the Committee be informed about the problem, rather than the public.

Mr Firoz Patel, Deputy Director General: Planning, DHET, said that the reference to publication in the Gazette is already in the principal Act, and if the Committee determines that it is necessary to table it in the National Assembly, once it comes to Parliament, it would be public. The intention of the policy was to make the report public.

The Chairperson asked whether the main reason for publishing it in the Gazette was for public information, and Mr Patel confirmed that it was.

Mr M Mbatha (EFF) said that he thought it made sense. He did not feel that the administrative processes necessary to entrench accountability needed to be eliminated on the basis of cost. He had discussed this with Ms Kilian, who said that the Gazette requirement escalated costs, but he believed that the intention of the primary and amended legislation was to enhance the instruments, to encourage public accountability and increase it to levels acceptable in terms of proper governance. Anything that moves in this direction should be implemented.

Mr Walters said that the fact that the provision was in the Act meant that the only additional cost would be to submit the report to Parliament – and printing the report for Members was a minuscule cost in the scheme of things. Given that the Parliament is transparent, accountable and open, there was no problem with keeping the reference to the report being gazetted and that members of the Committee should receive the report.

Mr E Siwela (ANC) said that the insertion would encourage accountability, that there was no problem with it, and he would support extension from 60 to 90 days.

Mr Mbatha said that he wanted to know why the DHET was proposing that 90 days was more reasonable than 60. The DHET was capable of responding more quickly and putting the necessary resources towards solutions. The solution, as suggested by the assessor, would be utilised. He asked why it was being suggested that the assessor might not complete the report in 60 days.

The Chairperson repeated that question concerning the extension to 90 days.

Dr Diane Parker, Deputy Director General: University Education, DHET, explained that there was a threefold reason. The assessor does his or her work and provides the report to Ministry at the end of that period. The report must be evaluated to ensure that there are no legal issues or problematic issues. The assessor will do whatever is required in order to finalise the report ,and that process takes about a month. The next step is for the Minister to confer with the council, giving the council the opportunity to see that report. After that, the Minister must peruse the report. The administrative aspect should not take more than 90 days; it could be managed, but this was being suggested in relation to the practicalities.

Adv Boshoff said that the specific provision, clause 47(1), requires that the independent assessor must “within a period determined by the Minister, but not exceeding ninety days”, produce the investigation and the report. Subsection (2) then goes on to say that the Minster must as soon as practicable provide a copy of the report referred to to the council, and then publish the report. He pointed out that the Minister has to constitute a Council – and this cannot be done in a short period of time. It was not possible to publish and finalise the report without the input of the council. The legislation provides a process before the report is available to the public, allowing the opportunity to consult with council and get its comments to determine practicalities before making it public.

Mr Walters asked what would happen if, after a report comes back from the council, it appears that the council has not approved the report. He asked if the Minister could then “sanitise” that report, or whether it had to publish it as it was, when coming back from the council. 

Adv Boshoff said that the report has implications as there may be legal challenges. When it is published, it is open, and it must be dealt with in a process which is subject to public scrutiny. The Minister, in terms of the new amendment, is taking the responsibility of an indemnifying independent assessor. The approach is purely to look at whether there is a possibility of claims caused by the findings which have not been justified and cannot be defended. The approval is to be published in a Gazette because the Minister is the only authority who can authorise that. The content is not of concern; it is rather that the Minister authorises publication. That process is also to ensure that there is no liability to the Minister.

Mr Mbatha said that he was comfortable with the response but that he wanted to cite one example. The Walter Sisulu University did things differently, although still within the Act. It seemed quicker and although all the circumstances are not known, it seemed that the report genuinely resolved many things. Two months was long enough for the DHET to act. The DHET should benchmark the circumstances for the future, so that the journey of accountability could be fast-tracked. 

Ms Kilian said that the DHET had established the practicalities. Sometimes there are very complex issues and some elements such as the council could frustrate the work of the independent assessor and it could be a complex matter. If the council is no longer in operation, the Committee had to provide a realistic timeframe for the Minister to comply with the Act. By amending the period from 60 days to 90 days, the Minister could comply with the Act.

The Chairperson asked for input from the legal advisers from Parliament and the Department.

Ms Ngcobozi added one comment on the timeframe. The period was stated as ‘not exceeding’ – this meant a lesser period of time may be adhered to. In terms of the drafting, the provision needed to be cleaned up – particularly ‘practicable’ and ‘not exceeding’, in order to conform to drafting standards.

The Chairperson asked that the Committee be advised on the drafting of the provision before the end of the meeting.

Mr Makabeni agreed with Ms Ngcobozi in terms of cleaning up the provision. Another issue was that the Committee might want to consider ‘for consideration by the relevant Committee.’ When reports are tabled before the Assembly, the Assembly forwards the report to the relevant Committee anyway, so it may not be necessary for the provision to be so prescriptive.

The Chairperson noted general agreement on those comments.

Adv Boshoff accepted the comments and suggestions. He said that he did not have a case study to hand, but the principle was that the DHET will get some cases that can be resolved quicker than others. The legislative framework must provide a timeframe for the worst scenario; a reasonable timeframe must be one in which the Minister must be able to perform the functions. The flexibility should be increased, but a reference to a practicable, feasible timeframe should be introduced. The principle is that a 90 day period allows for the proper process of dealing with the assessor and the council in that period.

The Chairperson noted general consensus on the 90 days and the inclusion of the new proposal for subsection (2).

Clause 28
The Chairperson noted the next proposal from Mr Cassim. He had proposed that in clause 28, subsection (4) and (5) should be added to section 49F. Members were asked to consider the proposal.

Ms S Mchunu (ANC) said that the entire clause had, according to her notes, been agreed upon previously, and did not feel there was any need to revisit it.

Ms Kilian remembered the Committee deliberating on the provision as contained in the amendment Bill, and thought that it was unnecessary to insert the proposed new subsections, as the provision was already adequate to ensure public accountability.

Mr Mbatha wanted to check with the officials whether anything contained in the new provision was vehemently opposed to its aims in drawing up the provision.

Mr Walters noted that he did not serve on the Committee and was not aware of what had happened. He respected the fact that this may have been raised already. Mr Cassim had drawn up what he thought would assist the Committee and the DHET in the long run. He suggested that rather than being bound by technicalities, it would serve the Committee well to take the  opportunity to make the Bill as good as possible instead of having to return to it at a later stage. He understood the concerns, but suggested that perhaps the Committee could take two or three minutes to deal with the issue. His understanding of the amendment provisions was that a report would have to be submitted, and he suggested that proper consideration of all proposals would merely strengthen the views of the parties as to what was achieved in that term of office. He appealed the Committee to look at this provision afresh.

he Chairperson said that the provision was referring to a handover report. Ms Ngcobozi had previously asked where the provision was in the principle legislation.

Mr Siwela said that at the end of the contract of the administrator, a report should be given. He did not think it was necessary to put this into the legislation.

The Chairperson said that it was obviously a standard practice, on exit of the administrator, that a handover report should be made, to continue the work that had been done.

Ms Kilian said that the Committee should be more cautious. She pointed out that the exact wording of subsection (4) referred to an administration terminating “for any reason”. The reasons for termination of the office of the administrator were captured in clause 49(h) and these included: g – ‘the expiry of term of appointment, death or incapacity.’ It would be impossible for a dead administrator to comply with the Act. She cautioned that the Committee should be very circumspect in finding the correct wording and asked Mr Walters to explain the concern that warranted a change to this provision.

Ms Ngcobozi said that  in the previous meeting, the discussion about the report of the administrator was focused on section 49(i), but she cautioned that the Committee should be wary of putting too many details in the amendments. The proposed  subsection (4) is too detailed for legislation, although these kinds of details could be included in regulations. She did not have any particular comment on the proposed (5) and left that to the Committee to decide.

Mr Makabeni similarly expressed concern about the amendment. Section 49(f) deals with powers and functions of the administrator, and reporting does not fit comfortably in this section. He supported Ms Kilian’s comment regarding the grounds for termination. All that need to be provided for is a report from the administrator.

Adv Boshoff agreed with Mr Makabeni and said that the focus should be on the fact of the report. The report is an outcome. The proposals now gave extensive detail, and this level of detail could sometimes be to the detriment of good legislation. If one aspect is forgotten, the rules of interpretation concluded that this omission was a deliberate  intention by the legislature. This may not be the desired outcome, and it may be better to refer to a report where more flexibility is provided.

Mr Walters took Ms Kilian's point on the termination. He asked if submission of the report was a specific requirement in another section. He questioned what would be wrong with asking that a report be tabled in front of the National Assembly and then gazetted.

Ms Kilian wanted clarity if the Committee was prepared to consider the proposal for the new (5). The Committee should be very cautious. An administrator takes over the role of the council, to investigate and determine the extent of the problems of the institution. Those findings will be contained in a report which may not have been tested legally. Consequently, if the administrator found that some officials were not acting in accordance with certain principles, and those findings were contained in a report, it could lead to legal action. For instance, whenever a forensic audit is conducted, the company leading it will state that this is a confidential document not for publication and not for use in any forum, because it has not been tested through a legal process. For example, it is not the role of the auditors to determine whether money went between bank accounts. Where there was an administrator, it would be very risky to have this published in the public domain and it could lead to law suits, and if published in the NA, it became a public document. She would strongly advise not accepting this proposed amendment.

Mr Siwela said that the Committee respects the views of Mr Cassim as a member of the Committee. DHET has had administrators before who provided reports. Unless the Committee thought that  reports were not dealt with properly, there seemed no need to make the legislation so prescriptive. .

Dr Parker commented that whenever an administrator is brought in, Terms of Reference for the administrator are published in the Gazette, and that includes always that the administrator has to provide a report that indicates what should happen. If such a provision were agreed upon, it was merely the fact of providing the report that would need to be covered, and not all the details, because those details would already be in the terms of reference. She agreed with Ms Kilian that it could indeed be detrimental to the institution if the report was made public, as well as posing a risk of legal action, and agreed that this should not be a requirement.

Mr Patel said that the issue was that these were administrator-particular issues. Parliament had other way to determine if there were issues of substance. This would give the Minister an opportunity to not commit himself or say anything that will be challenged in the court.

The Chairperson concluded that only the DA Members agreed with the amendments proposed in a new (4) and (5).  The DA’s dissenting vote would be registered.

Mr Patel said that to be fair to Mr Cassim, who had driven most of the amendments, Parliament would have to go back to the fair process as the issue had not been dealt with.

The Chairperson said that she had ruled on this matter.

Clause by clause deliberations
The Chairperson asked that, having dealt with the proposals by Mr Cassim, the Committee could now proceed to clause by clause deliberations.

Clause 1: Definitions
Mr Walters asked if there would there be an insertion of a definition on adverse findings.

The Chairperson asked if the Committee had agreed to an inclusion of adverse finding.

Ms Kilian said that there was no agreement. There had been a discussion about adverse finding but it was decided that there was no need for adverse finding to be defined, as it was a commonly used and understood term.

Ms Kilian asked for confirmation that the Committee was now working with the original Bill as published – B 36-2015 – and with the A version. The proposed amendments document made it clear which of the definitions had been amended. No new definitions had been included. There was no agreement on the inclusion of such a definition.

The Chairperson noted that she would be referring to B36A–2015.

Adv Boshoff stated that B36A-2015 had no legal status; it was merely drafted in the form of a Bill and contained the issues raised by the Committee. It was drafted as a joint effort between state law advisors, Parliamentary advisors and DHET advisors, following their understanding of what the Committee wanted. However, as it had no actual status, it could not be called a Bill – although it would become the amended Bill if the Committee were to agree on it.

The Chairperson then said that the Committee would be working off  the amendment Bill, but that B36A-2015 could be used for reference.

Adv Boshoff noted that the date on the document was 14 April 2016, whilst the previous one was dated March.

The Chairperson said that the DA’s objection on clause 1 was noted.

Adv Boshoff said that it was important that the Committee expresses approval on each clause.

Clause 3
The Chairperson said that there was a proposal on clause 3. The clause was reformulated, as set out on page 4. Members agreed with the clause.

Ms Kilian sought clarification on the process now being followed. Clause 3 had been amended. One of the paragraphs from the wording in the original Bill had been deleted, and another was inserted, relating to the Minister's responsibility on policy. The Committee had extensive deliberations on that and all parties came to an agreement, which was captured on the informal document. However, that had not yet been adopted officially by the Committee.

Mr Walters said he thought that the Committee were adopting clause by clause and that the entire Bill would be adopted in the next meeting.

The Chairperson said that although that had been her announcement at the beginning of the meeting, she was corrected by the suggestion that the clauses and Bill could be adopted in the same meeting.

Adv Boshoff said that when the Committee is going through clause by clause, the Committee must decide separately whether to accept the amendments proposed on those clauses, in order to decide whether the clause as originally worded, or the amended version is being accepted. In the absence of any amendments, the clause would be accepted or rejected.

The Chairperson asked for further input from the Parliamentary Legal Advisors.

Ms Ngcobozi said that each and every clause must be looked at, to see if there is agreement. The Committee must vote on the individual clauses and then vote on and adopt the Bill.

Mr C Kekana (ANC) added that when the Committee agreed upon or adopted a clause, any objections would also be noted. If there is an amendment, it must be recorded whether the clause is agreed with or without the amendments. He saw no difference between agreeing to or adopting – he thought they were the same result.

 clause adopted or agreed upon with the amendment, it must be said that it is agreed with the amendment. He didn’t see the difference between agree and adopt and that it was one and the same thing.

The Chairperson said that there was a proposal to start afresh and specifically note any objections.

Ms Kilian said that, to help the process and make sure it is procedurally correct, the objection by the DA to clause 1 was noted. The same must be done for clause 2, so that the Committee had a record of where there was unanimity and where the Committee differed.

The Chairperson initiated the clause by clause deliberations from the beginning.

Clause 1 with amendments
Accepted by the Committee, with amendments, but  with an objection by the DA.

Clause 2
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 3 with amendments
Accepted by the Committee, with the amendments
Clause 4
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 5 with amendments
Ms Kilian noted that there were references to “sections” but asked if that should not read “subsections”.

Adv Boshoff said that the original Bill had referred to “subsections” but because one of the originally-proposed subsections had since been deleted, it would be incorrect to refer to “subsections”. This was a  technical but necessary amendment.

Mr Makabeni said that Ms Kilian was correct. He proposed that in order to be entirely accurate, the Committee should substitute ‘to omit subsections’ with ‘to omit subsection.’

Adv Boshoff said that the proposal was to omit the wording in the Bill which refers to ‘sections’ and to replace it with ‘section.’ The proposal in the draft document was the one that the Committee agreed to as a technical amendment.

The Chairperson said that the original Bill reads ‘subsections’ and after ‘subsection (5).’ She asked if the Committee wanted to retain the word “subsection” but leave it in the singular, not plural form.

After further comments, Mr Patel said that Ms Kilian is correct and that ‘subsection’ must be amended to ‘section.’

This clause was accepted by the Committee as amended.

Clause 6
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 7
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 8 with amendments
The Chairperson said that in line 31 there was a correction on the removal of the comma.

Accepted by the Committee, with the amendments.

Clause 9
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 10 with amendments
Accepted by the Committee, with amendments.

Clause 11
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 12 with amendments
Accepted by the Committee, with the amendments.

Clause 13
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 14
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 15
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 16
Accepted by the majority of the Committee, with an objection noted from the DA.

Clause 17
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 18
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 19
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 20
Accepted by the Committee.

The Chairperson noted that both ‘shall’ and ‘must’ were used, and asked whether this was an amendment.

Adv Boshoff said that this was not an amendment and that both words were to be included in the Bill.

Clause 21
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 22
Ms Kilian said that clause 22 was submitted by Mr Cassim and had been reworked. The Committee had to ensure that clause 22 was adopted with amendments agreed to as in Mr Cassim’s submission, but others must not be adopted. She felt that clause 22 was fine, as there was unanimity.

For clarity, the amendment was read out as follows: ‘the Minister must, as soon as practicable and not exceeding 90 days of receiving the report referred to subsection (1), provide a copy of the report referred to in subsection (1) to the council concerned, table the report before the National Assembly for consideration by the relevant committee and publish such report in the Gazette.’

Ms Kilian thought that this was an accurate reflection of what had been agreed to.

The Chairperson asked the legal advisors to explain how the clause would be crafted to exclude the other words that were not being agreed to.

Mr Makabeni proposed  that subsection (2) would undergo the following changes:
- ‘as soon as practicable’ would be put in square brackets to indicate that it is being deleted from the principal Act.
- ‘within 90 days of receiving report’ would be inserted and underlined
- The part in square brackets would remain
- The new insertion ‘table the report before the National Assembly’ would be underlined
- ‘for consideration by the relevant committee’ would be deleted in line with the agreement by the Committee.

Members adopted the clause with the amendments as explained by Mr Makabeni.
Clause 22 with amendments
Mr Kekana referred back to the discussion around whether the document was to be made public before it was tested in a court, asking if the amendment now covered this

The Chairperson answered that the Committee had agreed on clause 22, in order to be transparent. The disagreement that Mr Kekana was referring to was in clause 28.

The clause was accepted, with the amendments.

Clause 23
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 24
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 25
Accepted by the majority of the Committee, with an objection from the DA.

Clause 26
Accepted by the majority of the Committee, with an objection from the DA.

The Chairperson asked members to help her with capturing the voting. 

Mr Walters said that the names of the parties who objected to certain clauses should be recorded.

Clause 27
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 28 with amendments
The Chairperson said that there was a proposal to amend this clause.

Ms Kilian asked for clarity, since the Committee has deliberated on the submission by Mr Cassim.

The Chairperson said that she was talking about the amendments, which have all been accepted. Mr Cassim’s proposal to insert new sub-clauses had not been accepted.

Mr Walters noted the objection of the DA to Clause 28 with the amendments as set out in B36A-2015.

The Chairperson noted that the new proposals were not agreed upon by the majority of Members.
The majority of the Committee was in favour of the clause, with an objection from the DA.

Clause 29
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 30
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 31 with amendments
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 32
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 33 with amendments
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 34
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 35 with amendments
Accepted by the Committee.

New clause
Adv Boshoff drew the Committee’s attention to page 22 of B36A-2015, which set out the insertion of a new clause which was an amendment to section 65B of the Act.

He summarised that there was a proposal to introduce a new clause 36 which means that the clauses would be referred to, in this meeting, in terms of the number that they bore in the Bill, but the numbers in the final version would obviously then change to take account of the insertion. to be adopted.

Adv Boshoff offered to assist the Chairperson. He explained that the issue was that there was no amendment to section 65B in the original Bill, but when the Committee deliberated on the requirements for private institutions, a decision was taken that the existing Act’s section 65B should also be brought in as a new clause. It would now be incorporated into the B Bill and will become the new clause 36. The originally-numbered clause 36 is also being amended.

Members agreed to insert the new clause, as it appeared in B36A-2015, and also agreed to its substance.

Originally numbered Clause 36 with amendments
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 37 with amendments
Accepted by the majority of the Committee, with an objection from the DA and EFF.

Clause 38
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 39
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 40
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 41
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 42 with amendments
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 43
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 44
Accepted by the Committee.

Clause 45 with amendments
Accepted by the Committee.

The Chairperson stated that the clause by clause deliberations were complete.

Memorandum to the Bill
Ms Kilian requested clarity whether it was necessary for the Committee to revise the memorandum, as changes had been made, and asked if there had been thought as to the effect of the changes on the memorandum. According to the NA Rules, an amended memorandum, if necessary, must be submitted.

Adv Boshoff said that the Bill provides guidelines for consequential changes. In the last meeting the Parliamentary Law Advisor and the State Law Advisor indicated that there might also be changes to the Long Title and the index provided in the Bill. because a new clause had been inserted. This may not impact the layout but it would be considered, as well as the Memorandum. The legal team would consider all of these changes when the final A list and B Bill was in place.

Ms Kilian replied that she was satisfied on that point.

She pointed out that in terms of NA Rule 251, the Committee has now to submit its report, the Bill agreed to and the supporting Memorandum which was introduced with the Bill, or the amended Memorandum. She wanted to know how the committee should move forward and whether the Committee should vote now to adopt the Bill and the legal team would then be left to look at the implications.

Mr Siwela noted that the DA had objected to three or four clauses and the EFF had objected to one clause. He asked whether it was possible for the Committee to check the reasons for the objections.

Mr Kekana replied that if reasons for objection were checked, Members would open up a fresh debate, and they would merely object if they did not accept or were not convinced on arguments. He thought that the objections should merely be noted.

Adv Boshoff said that it was important to follow the correct process. At the next meeting, Members would adopt the Bill and the amended memorandum. All of the documentation would be in place on 4 May, and Members could then vote on the Bill as a whole, including the memorandum.

The Chairperson asked whether the members would see the amended memorandum for the first time at the meeting on 4 May .

Adv Boshoff said that they would make the documents available, through the Committee Secretary, before 4 May. The tabling of the document will be done officially when the Bill as a whole is voted upon.

Ms Kilian commented that the adoption of the Bill cannot occur until the Memorandum, which forms part of the Bill, had been completed.

The Chairperson noted that this was the end of the process for today.

Mr Walters asked to be excused and thanked Members for the warm welcome.

Minute adoption
The minutes of 13 April were adopted, without amendments.

Committee announcement
The Members proposed a vote of thanks for the work that the Committee Assistant had done and wished her the best in her future endeavours.

The Chairperson noted that the Committee had written to the Minister after identifying problems with the site for the Denel Swartklips, which resulted in positive interventions.

She further noted that the Committee had received a complaint from the TETA employees, and proposed that the Committee should ask the manager to appear before the Committee to make recommendations. The Construction Sector Education and Training Authority (SETA) had also made some allegations, and these must be investigated to ensure that there is not wastage of resources. It would be asked to appear on a future day.

The Chairperson thanked Members and the legal advisors for their input. The report on the Bill would also be considered on 4 May.

The meeting was adjourned.

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