Committee report into hearings on Food Security in South Africa: discussion

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Meeting Summary

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Meeting report

20 MAY 2003

Chairperson: Mr N H Masithela (ANC)

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The Committee was to discuss the report on food security in South Africa. However, the discussion was postponed to the following Tuesday. The Chairperson invited Members to submit recommendations that would be added to the report and would be forwarded to Parliament.

In March 2003 the Portfolio Committee had convened hearings into food security in South Africa at which a number of non-governmental organisations, academic institutions and departmental officials made submissions.

The Committee was therefore discussing the report on the hearings.

The Chairperson said that the report addressed all issues directed to the Committee. However, the report does not add recommendations from the Committee to Parliament. He said that there is a need to highlight lessons learnt from the hearings and decide what recommendations to make to Parliament. He invited all Members to make recommendations which the Committee would consider for incorporation into the report.

Mr SB Farrow (DP) expressed concern about the size of the report. He said that the report should be summarised into a small precise document which takes out common denominators and leaves in key issues.

Dr AE Schoeman (ANC) disagreed with Mr Farrow. He was of the view that the report reflects a very good summary of the hearings. The central question the Committee should ask itself is what is expected from it. The Committee should work towards making recommendations emanating from the conclusions they have reached.

Dr AI Van Niekerk (NNP) asked if the Committee has to reinvent the wheel every time. His feeling was that the Committee only needs to criticise or support the report and decide whether it needs to be augmented. He cautioned against undermining the Department every time since that is where the expertise is.

Following further discussion on whether one or all Committee Members should make the recommendations, the Chairperson decided that he would take the responsibility of writing the recommendations. He invited all Members, in their personal capacities, to forward recommendations to him. He also indicated that there is no guarantee that such recommendations would all be included into the report.

The meeting was adjourned.



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