Members of the Select Committee on Finance met to consider the Money Bills Amendment Procedure and Related Matters Amendment Bill and the Committee report on its engagements with five metropolitan municipalities.
The report on the metros was adopted, with the Chairperson indicating that a report by the Auditor General (AG) would be circulated among the Members, and a meeting to consider the report should be set up with the AG before the end of 2019.
The Money Bills Amendment Procedure and Related Matters Amendment Bill was considered clause by clause. The DA and EFF reserved their positions, and agreed to the adoption of the Bill with reservations.
Outstanding Committee minutes were adopted without contestation.
The next meeting of the Committee would be held at the end of November, when three amendment Bills relating to tax would be tabled.
Consideration and Adoption: Metro Municipalities report
Members went through the Committee report on five metros page by page, focusing on the socio-economic context, the financial highlights and the assessment by National Treasury of all the municipalities’ presentations. The five metros were Nelson Mandela Bay, eThekwini, Buffalo City, City of Cape Town and Mangaung.
The Chairperson directed their attention to the observations and recommendations, and highlighted recommendation 5.13, which stated: “The City of Cape Town should put measures in place to address high crime levels, with support from other stakeholders and spheres of government,” and added that the Minister of Police was heavily engaged in crime matters in the metros.
Mr T Motlashuping (ANC, North West) wanted clarity on the recommendation which stated that the City of Cape Town “should plan properly and budget for in-migration,” and asked if the word “in-migration” was the same as “immigration.”
Clarity was provided by other Committee Members, who said that it meant in-migration through expansion, and not immigration.
The Chairperson put the report to the Members.
The proposal for adoption was made by Mr L Gaehler (UDM, Eastern Cape) and Mr M Chabangu (EFF, Free State).
The Chairperson said that the Auditor General (AG) had made a presentation to the Standing Committee on Auditor General and the Standing Committee on Appropriations. The document would be circulated among the Committee members. A meeting to consider the report should be set up with the AG before the end of 2019.
Money Bills Amendment Procedure and Related Matters Amendment Bill
The Chairperson led the Members through the Bill clause by clause.
When this procedure had been completed, he read out: “The Select Committee on Finance, having considered the Money Bills Amendment Procedure and Related Matters Amendment Bill [B28 – 2018], referred to it, and classified, by the Joint Tagging Mechanism as a section 75 Bill, reports that it has agreed to the Bill without amendments.”
He put this to the Committee as a proposal for adoption.
Mr Motlashuping moved that the proposal be adopted. He was seconded by Mr M Monakedi (ANC, Limpopo).
Mr F Essack (DA, Mpumalanga) said that the DA as a party reserved their rights on this matter, and would explain their position via a declaration in the House.
Mr Chabangu said that the EFF was also in the same position as the DA, and the Bill should be adopted with reservations.
The Chairperson asked the Members to consider the minutes of 11 September 2018, where the Committee had met the Buffalo City Metro.
Mr Essack and Mr Motlashuping moved the adoption of the minutes.
The Chairperson put the minutes of 12 September to the Committee, commenting that it had been his wife’s birthday, to which Mr Chabangu responded that it had been his birthday as well, evoking laughter from the Members.
Mr Monakedi and Mr Motlashuping moved the adoption.
When the minutes of 9 October were put to the Members, Mr Motlashuping moved their adoption, but Mr Essack interjected and said that Mr Motlashuping had not been present at the meeting. This was clarified by the Committee Secretary, who said that he had been present but had left the meeting early.
Mr Chabangu said that he had absent, but with an apology. However, he had sent this communication to the wrong person and it had not reached the Committee.
The Chairperson said that it was important for members to liaise with their Personal Assistants to ensure that communications were sent out properly.
Mr Motlashuping and Mr Monakedi moved the adoption of the minutes of the meeting.
Also on October 9, there had been public hearings on the Money Bill, and the meeting had lasted for 14 hours.
Mr Essack and Mr O Terblanche (DA, Western Cape) moved the adoption.
The Chairperson put to the Members the minutes of 23 October.
Mr Essack and Mr Terblanche moved the adoption.
The Chairperson put to the Members the minutes of 25 October, which had been a briefing by the Minister and the National Treasury.
Mr Monakedi and Mr Essack moved the adoption.
The Chairperson put to the Members the minutes of 30 October. Mr Terblanche and Mr Monakedi moved for adoption.
The Chairperson put to the Members the minutes of 31 October, which had 15 submissions from the public hearings on the Medium Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS).
Mr Essack and Mr Monakedi moved the adoption.
The Chairperson put to the Members the minutes of 2 November, which dealt with the responses from the National Treasury on the public hearings on the MTBPS.
Mr Monakedi and Mr Terblanche moved the adoption.
The Chairperson said that the Select Committee’s next meeting would be at the end of November, and there were three amendment Bills relating to tax which would be tabled. This would cover three days, from 27 to 29 November.
The meetings of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) meetings would run until 7 December.
Ms T Motara (ANC, Gauteng) said that as a member of the Whippery, the programme had already been finalised. She would have a separate meeting with the Chief Whip regarding clashes and logistics.
Mr Essack asked if some of the meeting dates could be changed.
The Chairperson said that this could not be done, as the meetings had already been publicised through newspaper advertisements.
Mr Motlashuping said that it was the same people who came for public hearings, and asked if there was a possibility for a change. He said he would not be attending Friday meetings.
The Chairperson said that the Whip would deal with such a case.
The meeting was adjourned.
- Committee Report on Money Bills Amendment Procedure and Related Matters Amendment Bill
- Committee Report on five metros of Nelson Mandela Bay, eThekwini, Buffalo City, City of Cape Town and Mangaung
- Committee Report on Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement for the revised fiscal framework tabled by the Minister of Finance