The Select Committee on Transport, Public Service and Administration, Public Works and Infrastructure in the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) nominated Mr M Mmoiemang (ANC, Northern Cape) as the Chairperson of the Committee. Mr Mmoiemang accepted the nomination, and was duly elected unopposed.
Ms Mahdiyah Solomons (Committee Secretary), reminded the Committee that Rule 91 of the NCOP (National Council of Provinces) stated that it had to elect one of its own Members to be the Chairperson at its first meeting. The procedure directed the Committee Secretary to call for nominations and a seconder from the floor. If there was one nomination, the person would be declared as the Chairperson of the Committee, but if there was more than one nomination, the names of the nominees would be put to a vote by a show of hands. At the end of the voting, the nominee with the majority of votes would be declared as the Chairperson of the Committee. Members could vote only once.
The Committee Secretary then called for the nominations.
Mr J Londt (DA, Western Cape) suggested the use of a secret ballot, rather than a show of hands. He added that there was a legal opinion to back up his suggestion.
The Committee Secretary said a show of hands was a common practice for an open meeting, and that it was the way it had been done in the past.
Mr R Landsman (ANC, North West) said the voting should follow what the Committee Secretary had indicated. He suggested that the view of the Committee should be checked first regarding the matter.
He went on to nominate Mr M Mmoiemang (ANC, Northern Cape).
Mr M Dangor (ANC, Gauteng) seconded the nomination.
Mr T Brauteseth (DA, KwaZulu-Natal) wanted to know what the rule was regarding the show of hands. The rule that guided the Members on the matter should be quoted. Members should not be satisfied by doing it the way it had been done previously. A show of hands was not a legal opinion.
Mr M Rayi (ANC, Eastern Cape) told the Committee the rules were silent on the issue of a show of hands. The Committee should rather get a seconder for a secret ballot, and that applied as well to the show of hands.
The Committee Secretary asked Members who were in favour of a secret ballot or an open ballot to show hands.
Three members from the DA were in favour of a secret ballot, while six members were in favour of an open ballot.
Ms B Mathevula (EFF, Limpopo) abstained.
Mr Brauteseth said the Committee was not recognising the decision that had been taken before by the courts on a secret ballot when it came to the election of chairpersons, and that the previous Speaker of the Fifth Parliament was aware of the court ruling.
Mr Landsman asked the Acting Chairperson to do things as she saw fit, and not be intimidated and bullied by other people.
Ms M Moshodi (ANC, Free State) proposed the matter be closed, because the procedure had been followed and most Members had voted in favour of an open ballot.
Mr Londt said having one Member requesting a secret ballot did not invalidate the use of a legal opinion. One voice was still a valid voice.
Mr T Matibe (ANC, Limpopo) pointed out that Members had deliberated on how the process should be carried out. There was nothing wrong with procedure they had chosen. Everything was fair, and the process should not be complicated by people who felt that others were not competent to do their work.
Mr Rayi said the decision had been taken and the objections of the DA should be noted, and asked the Committee to carry on with its work. A show of hands had been done and the procedure had been followed.
The Committee Secretary said that the show of hands represented the provinces, and the meeting should continue.
She announced that Mr Mmoiemang, who had accepted his nomination, had been elected as the Committee Chairperson.
Mr Mmoiemang expressed appreciation for the confidence bestowed on him by the Committee. He said this was going to be an exciting period because he was from the Northern Cape, where he has been a Speaker for many years, and he was familiar with the rules of the NCOP. They were meeting at a time when the legacy report had to be done regarding land reform, the effectiveness of Parliament, and holding Parliament accountable. The directive would be taken from the work that had been done already. The Committee had to be redirected with regard to holding Parliament accountable.
Members congratulated the Chairperson, and wished him success in his position.
The meeting was adjourned.
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