Performing Animals Protection Amendment Bill [B9B-2015]: finalisation; Committees 5-year Strategic Plan; Agricultural Research Council nominations

NCOP Land Reform, Environment, Mineral Resources and Energy

11 October 2016
Chairperson: Mr OJ Sefako
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Meeting Summary


  1. The Chairperson of the Committee, Mr OJ Sefako, opened the meeting, welcoming everyone present.
  2. After a brief introduction, the Chairperson, proceeded to outline the agenda for the day.

Summary of Proceedings

Committee deliberations, with the possible finalisation and reporting on the Performing Animals Protection Amendment Bill [B9 B – 2015]

  1. The Chairperson afforded the Parliamentary Legal Advisor, Ms P Ngema the opportunity to explain why the Bill was returned by the President and what was expected from the Committee in response to the Presidents reservation.
  2. Ms Ngema explained that the Bill was returned because the President was of the opinion that the NCOP failed to adhere to section 75(2) of the Constitution as well as rule 61 of the NCOP’s rules.
  3. She explained that the President was of the opinion that the NCOP did not quorate at the time of voting, and that no Committee process was at fault: hence citing:

Meeting report

Section 75(2) of the Constitution reads - When the National Council of Provinces votes on a question in terms of this section, section 65 does not apply; instead ­

a. each delegate in a provincial delegation has one vote;

b. at least one third of the delegates must be present before a vote may be taken on the question; and

c. the question is decided by a majority of the votes cast, but if there is an equal number of votes on each side of the question, the delegate presiding must cast a deciding vote.

Rule 61 of the NCOP rules – 61. (1) When a question before the Council is to be decided by the votes of individual members and fewer than one third of the members are present when the vote is to be taken, the bells must be rung for three minutes.

(2) if at least one third is still not present after the bells have been rung, the presiding

officer must postpone the decision of the question.

  1. She further explained that the Committee must deal with the remitted Bill in accordance with Joint Rules 209 (2) The committee (a) - must consider, and confine itself to, the President’s reservation (b) - may confer with corresponding Assembly committee on any matter concerning the President’s reservation and 209 (3) If the Committee agrees with the President’s reservations, the committee must (a) – recommend in its report how any procedural defect in the Council’s proceedings can be corrected, if the reservations relate to a procedural matter.
  2. Ms S Bowers, Procedural Adviser in the NCOP, concurred with Ms Ngema that the reservations of the President pertain to a procedural matter which affects the proceedings of the House (NCOP). She advised that the Committee was to process the reservations in terms of Joint Rules 209 – 212. The Committee should therefore consider the reservations, pronounce itself on whether or not it agrees with the reservation ands indicate how the procedural defect should be remedied by the House it it is in agreement with the President’s reservation.    
  3. Members of the Committee were split in their interpretation of the Presidents reservation, with some considering that this was an opportunity to reconsider the Bill under wider consultation. They were also of the opinion that the advice given by the legal advisors are just that, advice, and not cast in stone, further questioning what prevents the Committee from reconsidering the Bill. Others were of the opinion that the President’s reservations pertained to a procedural matter of the House (NCOP) and not the Committee, thus accepting the advice from both the Parliamentary Law Advisor and NCOP Procedural Officer.
  4. Ms Ngema informed the Committee that the actions of the Committee are confined by Joint Rule 209(2) The Committee (a) - must consider, and confine itself to, the President’s reservation. The only actions that can be taken by the Committee is that of Joint Rule 209 (3) If the Committee agrees with the President’s reservations, the committee must (a) – recommend in its report how any procedural defect in the Council’s proceedings can be corrected, if the reservations relate to a procedural matter.
  5. The Committee report on the reservations of the President pertaining to the Performing Animals Protection Amendment Bill B9 B – 2015 was agreed to by the Committee with Ms Z Ncitha proposing the adoption of the report, seconded by Mr A Singh.

Members present during the voting process were as follows



Vote Cast

Ms Z Ncitha

Eastern Cape


In Favour

Mr E Mlambo


In Favour

Mr JWW Julius


Mr A Singh


In Favour

Mr B Smit


Mr AJ Nyambi


In Favour

Mr OJ Sefako

North West


In Favour

Ms E Prins

Western Cape


In Favour


Voting was done in accordance with NCOP rule 155 (3)(a)(b)

Rule 155 (3) – When a question is to be decided in terms of section 75 of the

                       Constitution - 

  1. – the question may be decided only if a majority of the Permanent members of the Committee is present;          
  2. – the question is decided by the majority of the votes cast


Introduction of the invitation received from the Minister for Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries inviting the Committee to nominate candidates to serve on the Agricultural Research Council. 

  1. The Committee secretary introduced the invitation received in terms of section 9(3)(a)(i) of the Agricultural Research Act, 1990 (No 86 of 1990) where parliamentary Committees are invited to nominate candidates with practical knowledge and experience in the areas identified in section 9(2)(a) of the Act to serve on the Agricultural Research Council. Members of the Committee received clarity regarding the documentations which should accompany each nomination and that a date for submission of these nominations will be communicated to the Committee by 12 October 2016.

Discussion and Possible review of the Committees 5 -year Strategic Plan

  1. The committee is required, as part of its annual planning cycle, to review its 5-year Strategic Plan once a year. During the initial planning session in February 2016, the committee was presented with a proposal to respond to the ethos of “doing more with less” by planning committee activities to focus more acutely on NCOP mandated matters with cross-cutting implications for the portfolio of Departments overseen by the committee. This proposal was developed further for the committee during this review session. The committee was presented with its focus areas identified at the beginning of the year, and performance levels in each of the 4 focus areas were discussed.
  2. The presentation highlighted the need to increase a focus on legislative oversight, in particular the challenges experienced with implementation or impacts of legislation and mandates at provincial and local government level. A further focus was placed on developing an annual review process for provincial level money bills mirroring but not duplicating the BRRR and Annual Report cycle of portfolio committees. This review is proposed to focus on the different grants allocated to provinces, their performance, and adherence to legislation governing the allocation and disbursement of the Grants.
  3. The committee further touched on the challenge of performing oversight, from a NCOP mandate perspective, over Departments with national competencies such as the Department of Mineral Resources and the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform. It was proposed that oversight should not duplicate the actions of Portfolio Committees, but attempt to develop a strategy of performing oversight over the “footprints” of national competencies as expressed in actions that influence other Departments through overlapping mandates or actions that challenge/influence the mandates of other Departments.
  4. It was agreed that these examples will be further developed in preparation for the 2017 strategic planning session of the committee.

Adoption of Minutes 

  1. 20 September 2016 – The adoption of the minutes by the Committee was proposed by Ms E Prins, seconded by Mr A Singh.


The Chairperson thanked everyone for attending, adjourning the meeting at 11h23.  


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