The Department of Arts and Culture briefed the Committee on its 2019/20 Annual Performance Plan (APP) in the presence of the Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture.
The Minister stressed the need to develop and frame a perspective of what the new portfolio will be as the programme of the 2019/20 Annual Performance Plan (APP) has to speak to the question of nation building and social cohesion had to be a part of the Department’s new portfolio.
The report explained among other things the DAC’s mandate, its relationship with the National Development Plan including Outcome 14, the Minister’s Ten Point Plan, the Strategic Goals and Related Indicators per programme, 2019/20 Outputs per strategic goal, links with the Medium Term Strategic Framework and Responses to Auditor General of South Africa (AGSA) findings.
The Committee heard that the Department through the South African Cultural Observatory (SACO), the research wing of the Department, has conducted a number of studies on the contribution of the arts to the economy. SACO has done an evaluation of the Mzansi Golden Economy (MGE) Programme of the Department for a period of three funding cycles from 2014 to 2017. The findings show that annually 25 941 employment opportunities are created through MGE funded projects with 1 473 being permanent jobs and 24 558 temporal job opportunities. More than R4.7 billion is set aside for the community library conditional grant services, and plans are underway for the development of 27 provincial Resistance and Liberation Heritage Route sites, including the National Resistance and Liberation Movement’s Museum announced in February 2019.
Members of the Committee welcomed the report from the Department. One Member noted that he had been a Member of Parliament from 2009 through this Committee of Sports, Arts and Culture and looking at this report since 2010 he was shocked that this Department has not progressed at all, and nine years later the Department has actually gone backwards in terms of the GDP contribution which is less than 3%. Members were concerned that the growth path of the Department had declined and questioned what the real plans of the Department were to alleviate the decline given that it seemed that if the plans just sat gathering dust the Department might fail the nation again. Members noted that the Department was bloated with too many entities, and they needed to be reduced.
The Committee asked the reason for the Department’s non-achievement on its targets; if the Department was contributing more than agriculture to the GDP of the country, and if yes could more information be provided about this; how many jobs had been created since the 2009/10 Report; whether those 5 million jobs that were promised in the 2009/10 Report were sustainable jobs; what the cause is of the under expenditure in this Department was; was there a mechanism for the Committee to monitor if a grant has been allocated to provinces; is there a plan for the Committee to address gaps in terms of grant allocation to different provinces and NGOs; how does the Department allocate grants to different NGOs, NPOs and individual artists and for clarity as to why the contribution to the GDP is going backward because in 2015 it was 2.9% but now it was 1.7%.
The Chairperson welcomed Members from the Committee, the Director-General (DG) and the team from the Department. She said that the purpose of the meeting was to receive a briefing from the Department of Arts and Culture on its 2019/20 Annual Performance Plan (APP).
The Chairperson read the apologies from the Minister and the Deputy Minister who would join the meeting later on. The Committee accepted the apologies.
The Minister’s Overview
Mr Nathi Mthethwa, Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture thanked the Chairperson for allowing him to give a brief overview. He apologised for arriving late. He said that one needs to develop and frame a perspective of what the new portfolio will be. The issue of nation building and social cohesion as permitted through the portfolio had to be explored through whatever part of the portfolio that was possible so that the programme of the APP has to speak to this question because it was critical that building a new nation was on the agenda. Prior to 1994 there was no nation to talk about because their colonisers made certain that after conquering South Africa they ensured that they remained in their ethnic groups, be it Afrikaners, amaXhosa, Zulus, and so on.
Therefore, the project in 1994 was to show that they were a diverse nation and that they found expression in the Constitution. But their diversity should not be utilised in a bad way, it should be utilised to forge unity. Now there is no better way of forging unity among South Africans than ensuring that people occupy similar spaces. When they are together through sport their hearts go out as a country when they see their South African flag flown whether in sport, arts or cultural activities. But as was said there are challenges, especially when it comes to issues of forging this unity. And with the wisdom of this Committee they will look at some of the programmes and see how to improve them, for instance with regard to the National days. How to ensure that National days are celebrated or commemorated is an affair for everybody. In the past years leaders of the parties in Parliament were encouraged to mobilise their constituencies to come to national events. And they have gone a step further to say leaders of the different political parties should address people before the main address by the President. As they can see now the programme has changed it is only the President who addresses the nation. But as they did that they realized that not everybody is pulling together to get constituencies to come to the national events. That is one area which still needs to be sharpened because people have no choice and people who propagate for the exclusion really do not have a future in South Africa because the majority of South Africans had undergone difficult times and want to see their children living in a peaceful environment, which is accepting everybody.
The Minister said that slowly but surely they have seen this sinking in the minds of most people that sports, arts and culture are a major contributor to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the country. Therefore, when they talk of economic growth and as they go through this prolonged economic slump they were looking in this area as an area which has a potential to grow, not only in South Africa but throughout the world. If they look at creative industries all over the world, 1% of employment is in this industry. The United States of America (USA) has released its creative and arts statistics and it places South Africa above agriculture in the contribution towards the GDP.
Therefore, it meant that it is an ever growing area which has to be look into. But there will be no social cohesion if they do not go to the heart of the problems they are facing today, and those are intolerance, racism and so on. They have to make a point that they have a strategic objective, they have a vision of a non-racial society, and so they should stick to that path to attain it. It is not going to be easy to attain it because there are people who want to take them back. Therefore, they must deal with those people going forward and the Committee will be helpful in that regard.
Briefing on the 2019/20 Department of Arts and Culture APP
Mr Vusi Mkhize, Director-General (DG): Department of Arts and Culture (DAC) said that the presentation outline is as follows:
- Setting the Context
- The DAC Mandate
- The National Development Plan, including Outcome 14
- SWOT Analysis
- Strategic Posture
- What is Our Storyline
- Economic Value
. Minister’s Ten Point Plan
- Strategic Goals and Related Indicators per programme
- 2019/20 Outputs per strategic goal and objectives
- Links with the MTSF and Responses to AGSA findings
- Budget and Expenditure Plan (2019 MTEF Allocations)
Mr Mkhize said in terms of the mandate of the DAC the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa 1996, has a direct bearing on the Department’s mandate:
- Section 16(1) - Freedom of expression (Freedom of artistic creativity; Freedom to receive or impart information or ideas and academic freedom and freedom of scientific research)
- Section 30 - Language and culture
- Section 32(1) - Access to information
- Section 9(3) – Equality
- Section 10 - Human Dignity
Mr Mkhize said the National Development Plan 2030 vision and trajectory (Chapter 15) is as follows:
- South Africans will be more conscious of the things they have in common than their differences.
- Their lived experiences will progressively undermine and cut across the divisions of race, gender, disability, space and class.
- The nation will be more accepting of peoples’ multiple identities.
The expanded Outcome 14 notes that Broad-based knowledge about and support for a set of values shared by all South Africans including the values contained in the Constitution:
- An inclusive society and economy. This means tackling the factors that sustain inequality of opportunity and outcomes by building capabilities, removing participation barriers and redressing the imbalances of the past.
- Increased interaction between South Africans from different social and racial groups.
- Strong leadership across society and a mobilised, active and responsible citizenry.
- Achieving a social compact that will lay the basis for equity, inclusion and prosperity for all
Mr Mkhize said that the National Development Plan (NDP) sets out five long-term nation building goals for South Africa. These goals and indicators are as follows:
- Knowledge of the Constitution and fostering Constitutional values:
- Number of schools saying the Preamble of the Constitution at school assemblies (DBE)
- Schools flying the national flag
- Schools that have booklets and posters of national symbols and orders
- Number of national days hosted and celebrated
- Equalising opportunities, promoting inclusion and redress:
- Number of community conversations on social cohesion and nation building conducted
- Social Cohesion report back summit hosted
- Number of Social Cohesion Advocates public programmes rolled-out
- Number of artists placed in schools
- Heritage infrastructure in rural areas built
- Sourcing Enterprise and the Art Bank of South Africa established
Cultural Observatory established
- Equalising opportunities, promoting inclusion and redress:
- Number of libraries built
- Number of Community Arts Centres built
- Number of community centres refurbished
- Number of projects completed for resistance and liberation heritage route
- Number of movies made that dramatize the lives of other liberation heroes
- Approval of the “South African Language Practitioners Council Bill”
- Number of African language included in official correspondence depending on provinces’ top three dominant languages
- Promoting active citizenry and broad-based leadership
- Number of community conversations on social cohesion and nation building conducted
- Achieving a social compact that will lay the basis for equity, inclusion and prosperity for all.
- A social compact for nation building and social cohesion
Mr Mkhize said the Department is leading Outcome 14 which was: A Diverse, Socially Cohesive Society with a Common National Identity.
The Department also contributes to the following outcomes:
- Outcome 1: Improved quality of basic education
- Outcome 4: Decent employment through inclusive economic growth
- Outcome 5: A skilled and capable workforce to support an inclusive growth path
- Outcome 7: Vibrant, equitable and sustainable rural communities with food security for all
- Outcome 11: Create a better South Africa and contribute to a better Africa and a better world
Mr Mkhize said the Minister’s Ten Point Plan entails the following:
- Nation Building and Social Cohesion and dealing with the challenges which includes racism, xenophobia, racial intolerances, hate speech and others.
- Focusing on Africa and BRICS
- Promotion of all languages and improving the functioning of the PanSALB
- Ensuring that MGE benefits the previously disadvantaged artists
- Community Arts Development programme
- DAC Schools Programme
- The Resistance and Liberation Heritage Route infrastructure, including the national heroes' acre project
- The Community Libraries Development Programme
- Publishing house to assist authors.
- Improving Reporting and Compliance
Mr Mkhwize said in terms of contribution to the cultural and creative industries to the economy the Department through the South African Cultural Observatory (SACO), a research wing of the Department, has conducted a number of studies on the contribution of the arts to the economy. These include:
- The employment study in creative economy done in 2017:
- The study indicated that cultural occupations made up 2.52% of jobs in South Africa in both cultural and non-cultural industries
- The non-cultural support occupations in the Cultural and Creative Industries (CCIs) employed 4.2%. Altogether, the creative economy accounts for 6.72% of all jobs in South Africa
- A Mapping Study that was conducted in 2017/18:
- The study indicated that in 2016, the GDP contribution of Cultural and Creative Industries was estimated at R63, 385 billion which represents around 1.7% of the total GDP. This percentage increases nominally to 5.7% (R233 billion) if the multiplier effect is factored into the equation.
The studies done have also shown that the trade with Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS), exports of cultural goods accounted for 0.46% of SA’s total commodity exports in 2016, while imports accounted for 0.66% and a significant driver of this trend rested on the performance of the “Visual Arts and Crafts” domain and also due to growth of “Performance and Celebration”, “Audio-visual and Interactive Media” domains; this has a direct impact on job creation.
- Furthermore; SACO did an evaluation of the MGE programme of the Department for a period of three funding cycles from 2014 to 2017. The findings show that annually 25 941 employment opportunities are created through MGE funded projects with 1 473 being permanent jobs and 24 558 temporal job opportunities.
- Through the celebration of national days; on an annual basis about 15 000 temporary jobs are created
- The development and maintenance of arts, culture and heritage infrastructure has the potential to make a substantial contribution to the creation of job opportunities, decent employment and entrepreneurship / SMME’s.
- More than R4.7 billion is set aside for the community library conditional grant services
- Plans are underway for the development of 27 provincial Resistance and Liberation Heritage Route sites, including the national Resistance and Liberation Movement’s Museum announced in February 2019.
- There are eleven (11) multi-year heritage infrastructure projects to celebrate and memorialise previously neglected heritage sites which are in various stages of implementation. These include new arts, culture and heritage infrastructure construction and upgrade projects, including the development of a new state theater.
Mr Mkhize said the DAC programme structure is as follows:
- Programme 1: Administration
- Programme 2: Institutional Governance
- Programme3: Arts and Culture Promotion and Development
- Programme 4:Heritage Preservation and Promotion
Mr Mkhize said that in terms of key outputs and measures include was:
Goal 1: A Transformed and Productive ACH Sector (Government and Civil society): The cultural events work stream supports large and small scale local, regional and national events that promote the arts, culture and heritage and that contribute to local economic development, job creation and the development of audiences.
Goal 2: An Integrated and Inclusive ACH Sector – The people with albinism came together joined by supporting groups within police and academic sector to discuss issues that affect their own state of affairs. People with albinism face multiple forms of discrimination worldwide.
Goal 3: An Effective and Efficient ACH Sector – To drive integrated outcomes-based research, planning, monitoring and evaluation across the Sector and to create a coherent policy and legislative environment for the ACH Sector. In 2019/20 financial year 5 governance tools (i.e. appointment of DAC reps on all councils, appointment of 4 councils, induction of the new councils, capacity building programme on corporate governance for new councils’ , evaluation/ assessment of councils).
Goal 4: A Professional and Capacitated ACH Sector – To build human resource capacity and promote excellence. 300 bursaries were awarded for the development of qualified language practitioners.
Mr Itumeleng Thlasedi, Acting Chief Financial Officer: DAC said that to the Pan South African Language Board for municipal service charges funds have been reallocated to the War Museum over the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) period (R1.02 million in 2019/20, R1.07 million in 2020/21 and R1.13 million in 2021/22);
- The 2019 MTEF baseline includes Budget baseline reductions. The net change to the vote Budget allocation of funds of R3.2 million over the 2019 MTEF: R1.02 million in 2019/20, R1.07 million in 2020/21 and R1.13 million in 2021/22 is taken from transfers budget baseline amounts are R5.2 million for 2019/20, R5.7 million for 2020/21 and R6.0 million for 2021/22. These amounts comprise Cabinet approved Budget baseline reallocations and reductions, in respect of transfers to public entities for a wage freeze for executives and senior management; and
Mr Thlasedi concluded that in terms the 2019 MTEF allocation the DAC baseline is R3.1 million. Conditional grants to provinces are R1. 5 million.
Mr L Ntshayisa (AIC) asked the reason for the Department’s non-achievement on its targets.
Mr Ntshayisa noted that the Department is contributing more than agriculture in the GDP of the country. He asked for more about this.
Mr Ntshayisa asked for clarity with regard to the national day celebration, which is usually a party event. He asked further how could it become a Government event and be inclusive to everyone.
Mr. W Faber (DA) said that he has been a Member of Parliament from 2009 through this Committee of Sports, Arts and Culture and looking at this report since 2010 he is shocked that this Department has not progressed at all. And 9 years later the Department has actually gone backwards in terms of the GDP contribution which is less than 3%.
And looking back at 2009/10 report, he said that there was a promise of creating 5 million jobs over 10 years on the New Growth Path. And then it was changed to the Mzansi Golden Economy. So, every now and again there are changes that this Department is always trying something new, but the 5 million jobs have not been created. Honestly, the number of people that are employed in the Department at this present moment is 440 000.
He asked the Minister to give a clear indication as to how many jobs have been created since the 2009/10 Report because from the 2009/10 report until now it is clear that the Growth Path has declined. What GDP growth took place from 2009/10 report until the current 2019/20 financial year? What real plans does the Department have? The plans could sit there for another 10 years and fail the nation again as a Department.
Minister Mthethwa asked for clarity on the statistics of the 2009/10 Report because Mr. Faber does not give details of the 20009/10 Report.
Mr Faber said he is referring to the 2009/10 Report which he has googled on his phone and he can email it to the Minister. ‘And what is on that 2009/10 Report compared with the current 2019/20 Report, it is shocking to see the decline in the growth path’.
The Chairperson interjected and said that any Member of the Committee that is asking a question must provide the Minister and the Department with detailed information so that clear responses can be provided by the Department.
Mr T Mhlongo (DA) asked whether those 5 million jobs that were promised in the 2009/10 Report were sustainable jobs. But nonetheless, he welcomes the presentation and the Minister’s overview. He also welcomed the changes in the Department and he will assist in fighting racism, and will advance for them to have one nation one future. He also hopes that their oversight work will be easier and to make this oversight work easier the Minister must treat them the same as Members of the Committee. He also welcomes the Soccer Indaba because that issue is close to his heart.
Mr Mhlongo asked what the cause is of the under expenditure in this Department was because there are specific targets for the Department to meet, which clearly indicates that there is something wrong in the Department.
Mr Mhlongo said it is concerning that the Department has 25 entities, which indicates that it is bloated with too many entities, and they needed to be reduced.
Mr Mhlongo said the gap between provinces and arts, which was highlighted by the DG is a problem. What are the gaps? What was the mechanism for the Committee to monitor if a grant has been allocated to provinces? Is there a plan for the Committee to address that gap in terms of grant allocation to different provinces and NGOs? How does the Department allocate grants to different NGOs, NPOs and individual artists?
Mr Mhlongo asked the CFO to define the term “goods and services”. How much is allocated for events because it is not linked to the budget?
Mr Mhlongo referred to page 9 of the report about the public opinion on race relations and asked about the latest graph because the Department only provided the 2017 graph.
Ms V van Dyk (DA) welcomed the presentation from the department. She asked for clarity as to why the contribution to the GDP is going backwards because in 2015 it was 2.9% but now it is 1.7%.
Ms V Malomane (ANC) asked what the Department is doing or were there any other programmes to promote a reading and writing nation so that artists and sports athletes can have something to fall back on when their careers are over.
The Minister and Department’s Responses
Minister Thethwa said on the first question from Mr Tshayisa that Programme 4, Heritage Preservation and Promotion had a tendency to make the Department underspend especially because of the infrastructure programme with its pipeline not always being in line with the financial year, for instance, they have been building a complex of Sartjie Baartman for many years now. So, they will find that from the under expenditure point of view those infrastructure projects had a contribution.
Minister Mthethwa said that on the issue of Agriculture versus the Arts and Culture GDP, he has made a recent study of the USA GDP and what the sector is contributing. When it came to South Africa they have decided that they need to have a research body as an arts and culture sector that they will fund so that they get scientific outcomes and a barometer of the sector itself when it came to economic contribution.
The South African Cultural Observatory is located at the University of Mandela in Port Elizabeth and this is their task. One of the things is that when people see tourism is booming in South Africa, what it is not accompanied by is the question ‘why’. This because people came to see not only Robben Island, but the Voortrekker Monument, Freedom Park, Apartheid Museum or whatever else is on offer and this is not factored in. Hence an indirect contribution is factored into the economy which has not been quantified. This is compounded by the fact that the sport economy has to be added into the equation. For instance, in almost all of the provinces there are at least two flagship programmes, so it is just that not all of them are successful and on the same level in terms of popularity. But when people talk about these flagships programmes they are a deliberate ploy from the Department to make sure that people get together to share spaces and make sure that tourism is booming.
Therefore, the performance of 1.7% GDP was a result obtained from the SACO research and it should be remembered that they were talking about the economy which does not perform at the same level all time every year. When the SACO started in 2015/16 the GDP was around 2.9%. So, if one looked at agriculture - which is one of the main areas of greater potential - it has contributed so much to the country’s GDP. Actually in South Africa the creative economy has not been calculated to be above agriculture at this point, but if one looked at how they both performed, agriculture has performed very badly in one of the four quarters of the financial year. It therefore means that it is not about the failure of the arts sector itself because in the creative industry live performances with audio visual in the main are contributing a larger portion to the sector.
Minister Mthethwa said that on the issue of national events being party events, this should be improved so that everyone could attend these events. One of the things in the last 2 years which has been a challenge is the build-up programme which was based on rallies which some people might say they do not go to. Therefore, ideas of these national events must come from everyone and the political parties represented in Parliament must change the face of these national events. Further discussion on this will be needed from the Committee.
Minister Mthethwa thanked Mr Mhlongo for his commitment to fight racism because racism is a crime and when people talk about crime and racism the tourist industry inevitably He said that the Department was looking forward to the oversight role of the Committee because that engagement will make the work of the Committee more rigorous.
Minister Mthethwa said that on the issue of the portfolios they should forget about the billions because in reality they were talking about millions for both the Departments’ of Arts and Culture, and Sports and Recreation. For instance, in Arts and Culture 80% of the R4 billion goes to provincial transfers and to the 25 entities. So, in real terms Arts and Culture has R900 000. Furthermore in real terms the R1 billion allocated to Sports and Recreation was R287m. These are not big departments.
He said that Mr Mhlongo is correct about the reduction of the 25 entities because there is a White Paper Review which suggested that these 25 entities were sustainable and had to be reduced to 5 entities which will be clustered together going forward.
On the issue of the Soccer Indaba, Minister Mthethwa said he is quite encouraged and committed to it because it is the best way to look at it. In that Soccer Indaba they should invite everybody, from the owners of the clubs to the coaches so as to be inclusive as much was possible.
Minister Mthethwa said Ms Malomane has touched on a very important thing with regard to the reading and writing nation. In 2016, they had agreed with the President when he became the patron of book reading and he is an ardent reader of books, and he has a rate of reading of 40 books per year. Reading is good for the development of the nations. But also talking specifically about indigenous languages the Department together with the Centre of the Book started a process of the re-edition of books; especially indigenous books like Ityala lamawele, Inkinsela yaseNgungundhlovu and so on just to get people into the richness of the language itself. Therefore, this Department gives bursaries to students of not less than 400 (does this refer to the number of students?) per annum for languages in major universities like the University of Cape Town (UCT) and the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), so as to help in the development of indigenous languages.
Mr. Mkhize said that on the issue of the contribution to the GDP the Department had embarked on research to get this information. When they looked at the data they needed to see the broader perspective through in-depth research when it came to that determination. It included the secondary or the indirect contribution of the sector in terms of creating jobs and contributing to the economy. So, the statistics they had now is evidence based and they needed that research because they could not just make claims about how much is being contributed by the sector to the GDP or how much is contributed by the sector towards job creation. The SACO contract will be shared with the Committee so that it too will be able to follow through on those findings which determined the extent of the contribution by the sector.
Mr. Mkhize said the presentation that they had provided has got all the details and they could project all those details that had been requested by the Committee.
Mr. Mkhize said on the under expenditure question that it should be indicated that they had realised they had a problem spending on infrastructure projects because of the challenges relating to both the capacity to manage, planning and monitoring these projects. But also they had a process where these projects were divided into different parts where they then approached the National Treasury to consolidate all infrastructure projects under one branch so that multiple DGs were not needed to account for that. The National Treasury approved this because they moved the infrastructure budget to one branch and that branch now accounts for all the infrastructure projects.
Therefore, all the projects have been consolidated under one branch. In that way it is now easier to monitor them. In order to decisively deal with this under spending they were in the process of appointing an internal Project Management Office (PMO) which will assist them with the expertise they required to plan, manage and monitor these infrastructure projects.
Mr. Mkhize said that on the question of the interphase between provinces and the Department as well as at local level, firstly they acknowledged that the function of sport, arts and culture is a concurrent function as per the Constitution. However, in dealing with the management of provinces in terms of what the Department provides, they had established structures where the Minister meets with the MECs, and the DG meets with HODs as well as the Chief Officers of entities. This meant that with regard to the issue of reporting and accountability, and alignment to the mandate during planning, management and monitoring, they were able to have some influence over what happened. The Minister has also signed the combat tool with the Chairperson’s of the entities so as to deal with the management of what happened regarding the oversight that the Department had over entities. Therefore, there are interphase mechanisms that they have as a Department, and there are scheduled meetings to engage with them and look at the reports on what is being done with the budget. Also when re-provision of the budget has to be done they required reports and the budget was then not just deferred. This would allow that it could be indicated whether the money has been used for its intended purpose, and grants that have been provided could be monitored.
The Chairperson thanked the Minister, the DG and his team for presenting to the Committee. She said because of time constraints questions that were not answered can be forwarded in writing through her office. The Committee will meet at 14:00 pm for another briefing by the Department of Sports and Culture.
The meeting was adjourned.