Department of Communications Amended Annual Performance Plan (postponed), with Minister

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Communications and Digital Technologies

28 August 2018
Chairperson: Mr C Maxegwana (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The National Department of Communications was scheduled to brief the Committee on its amended Annual Performance Plan. However, the Committee decided to postpone the meeting because the majority of members were absent.

The Chairperson lamented the situation; noting that officials had flown in from Pretoria and were accommodated in hotels. In his view this was an example of wasteful expenditure. He further noted that the most of the ANC MPs were absent and that this was an issue which needed to be raised at a political party level within the party.

Meeting report

The Chairperson greeted and welcomed everyone.

He also welcomed the Minister, Ms N Mokonyane (ANC), noting that there were visitors in the country. He lamented that only 3 members were present and this was unlikely to change due to the list of apologies he had received. As per the rules, the Committee could proceed with its business, but would be unable to take any decisions. He would allow for input from the Members present regarding the direction of the meeting. The presentation was circulated by the Department last week. The presentation was the only item which would be dealt with, apart from the minutes.

Ms P Van Damme (DA) asked what the quorum of the meeting was. If there was no quorum, the meeting could not proceed. There was no point in having a meeting if the Committee would be unable to reach conclusions. She suggested that the meeting be postponed as the Annual Performance Plan (APP) was an important document. The meeting could not continue if there was no quorum.

The Chairperson said that the Committee needed to arrive at a decision regarding the way forward. The proposal on hand was to postpone the meeting. The status quo was the doing of Committee members who were absent. There were officials from the National Department of Communications who had flown in from Pretoria and had used accommodation for the night in Cape Town in order to attend the day’s meeting, which was set to start at 09:00am. This was an example of wasteful expenditure on the part of the Department, caused by members of the Committee who were absent. Some of reasons for the non-attendances were understandable but some were not. He asked if there were members who seconded the proposal by Ms Van Damme.

 Ms V Van Dyk (DA) seconded the proposal. It was unacceptable that there was such a large number of absentees. Members of the Committee had full knowledge that they had committee meetings on Tuesdays, but a large number had not arrived.

The Chairperson confirmed that the DA was in a better position than the ANC on the day, which was missing 4 members at the meeting. This was an issue which needed to be raised at a political party level within the ANC. He conceded that the ANC needed to take most of the blame for the result on the day. He thanked the Minister for attending and apologised to the Minister and the Department for the state of affairs.

The meeting was adjourned.


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