SABC on Turnaround Plan & Editorial Policy; with Minister and Deputy Minister

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Communications

21 July 2020
Chairperson: Mr B Maneli (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

Video: Portfolio Committee on Communications 21 July 2020
Audio: SABC on: Turnaround Plan & Editorial Policy 

SABC Board Inquiry Final Report

In a heated virtual meeting, during which the Chairperson had to ask Members to switch off their microphones and cameras to restore order, the Committee eventually decided to call on the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) to return with a detailed response to questions which had been raised at previous meetings, but still remained unanswered. The meeting was meant to be a briefing by the Department of Communications on the SABC's turnaround plan, annexure staff optimisation, editorial policy and skills audit report, but dissatisfied Members insisted the presentation of the SABC should be deferred to the following day in order to get answers to their specific questions

Deputy Minister Pinky Kekana told the Committee that the SABC had met with unions and the shareholders to consider the entity’s outstanding issues. It was found that there had not been proper engagement, and an earlier meeting which had taken place with the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) was worrying, as staff and unions were aggrieved as they felt there had been no proper participation, and they were being left out of the process. The wage bill was identified as an issue, as well as the SABC’s regulatory framework, which was not conducive to reforms. It had been resolved that commercial reporting should be done in an itemised way to report accurately on where profits were being made.

The Deputy Minister had recommended that Section 189 be suspended, and a process of engagement commence with the SABC board. The unions had been informed that the Department and the SABC could not engage on human capital issues, and this would be placed in abeyance until a later date. It was recommended that the Competition Commission be consulted on the Telkom deal to scrutinise OTT partnerships and bidding on sports rights issues. She said the SABC was sometimes conservative with the truth, and that this should be looked into.

Members raised concern over the SABC lying to Parliament and telling the media different things. They were unhappy that the Deputy Minister had not provided a presentation document for the Committee to engage with. They were concerned about their questions from the previous meeting with the SABC still being unanswered, and questioned whether the skills audit had been done before the retrenchment process and engagements with the CCMA had begun. Some Members felt that political instructions had been given by the ANC to halt retrenchments at the SABC.

Members squabbled over whether the SABC should make a presentation to the Committee throughout their discussion. They would table questions for the SABC, and clarify what they wanted them to present on at the next meeting.

Meeting report

SABC turnaround plan

Deputy Minister’s overview

Ms Pinky Kekana, Deputy Minister of Communications, said the SABC had met with unions and the shareholder to consider all outstanding issues. Observation and feedback from the union indicated that there had not been proper engagement. The level of involvement by the unions was a worrying factor, as well as what transpired on 16 July, when the unions had met with the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA). The CCMA had instructed all parties to engage and return on 29 July. The wage bill was also a challenge. The SABC was now operating in a difficult situation, and the regulatory framework did not allow reforms.

The first issue involved itemising commercial reporting in order to report on where profits were being made. The second issue was the lack of engagement in the entity. The Deputy Minister said she felt that Section 189 should be suspended and a process of engagement should begin, to which the SABC Board had agreed. This was because unions were aggrieved, as they felt left out of the process, and there was no popular participation. As long as the unions were recognised, they had to be consulted so that there was ownership of the entire process going forward. The Deputy Minister indicated that during her engagements, she had informed the unions that she could not engage on human capital, and this would be placed in abeyance until a later date.

SENTECH expenditure was approximately R600 or R700 million, as well as other expenditures which needed to be cut down in order to save jobs. R400 million had been allocated for Capex which was needed to improve the technology network and other infrastructure within the SABC. They had considered which projects to embark on to assist in mitigating, and introducing people to be deployed in other areas.

The Deputy Minister said she was certain that the Department and the Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) process was delaying some of the processes. R500 million had been spent on content development. It had to be shown whether the content was new, and if there would be a return on the R500 million investment. The CFO had indicated that a return on investment could not be seen now, but only in the next 12 months.

She had requested that the Competition Commission be consulted on the Telkom deal to scrutinise the over-the-top (OTT) partnership. She had referred to Hong Kong-based Viu, and questioned how much money was being made by the SABC from Viu. How bidding on sports rights issues was done also had to be scrutinised. Everyone should be able to participate, not only Telkom and Vodacom, in order for there to be value. She pointed out that there was no need for legal approval to consult with the Competition Commission. She did not want to say that sometimes the SABC had lied, as it was too harsh, but that it had been conservative with the truth and this should be looked into.

On the must-carry and sports rights, a memo had been received from the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) on sports rights, and the SABC had to wait to be guided by Parliament before it proceeded with public engagement on the matter.

The Chairperson asked Members to engage on the Deputy Minister’s presentation.

Discussion

Mr L Molala (ANC) said the presentation had been disappointing, as it was presented in a diplomatic way. What the Deputy Minister was actually saying was that there was no cooperation between the SABC and the shareholder. Everything else raised had either been evaded or rejected. He was concerned about many outstanding matters on which the SABC had still not responded to the Committee. The SABC was also not cooperating with Parliament. At the last meeting, there had been an issue about Presidential sabotage claims, and a clear response had not been given on this. Each time the Committee asked about how the commercial arm of the SABC was doing, it was told that it was confidential, but whenever there was a request for a bailout, the Committee was brought in.

The Deputy Minister had confirmed Mr W Madisha’s (COPE) assertion that the SABC had lied to the Portfolio Committee. Lying to Parliament was a serious matter, and the SABC was breaching a strict protocol. Nobody was allowed to lie to Parliament, including the SABC and everyone else. The SABC had the gall to lie to Parliament, and this required investigation, because it was lying to the public. The Committee had also requested the SABC to provide a breakdown of all the legal costs, to explain how the R1.5 billion could be used up by the end of the year. This meant by the end of the financial year, the SABC would be looking for more money. The SABC had said they were in the process of concluding a skills audit and a skills plan, but up until now this skills audit had not been presented to the Committee.

He did not understand why the Committee was meeting with the SABC, as they were giving the same old reports. He did not think the SABC should be presenting now, and suggested the Committee table all its questions to the SABC, and the SABC should come back and respond to them. Non-core assets were also an issue. He stressed that the SABC should present a breakdown of its legal costs. The South African public did not deserve to listen to the same old issues that the Committee was raising and not getting answers to. He proposed that the SABC should not present today.

Ms P van Damme (DA) said she could not hide her irritation, and said the Deputy Minister should have given the Committee a presentation document, as she had raised important facts and figures which the Committee should have had before it to engage on before they met. It was unacceptable that she had not done this. Process mattered, the law mattered, and the way in which they engaged mattered. The Minister or the Deputy Minister could not tell the SABC to shelve the retrenchment process. They do not have this power. In terms of the law, the SABC reported to Parliament, and the board was responsible for the management of the SABC and the executive management on a day to day basis. It was problematic in principle that she had gone to the SABC with an instruction. She was not allowed to do that.

The ANC had made it very clear that they did not want retrenchments as this would embarrass them ahead of the election next year. Obviously this discussion had been approached in that tone -- that there was an instruction from Luthuli House to halt that process. Mr Molala’s soliloquy had been very instructive and confirmed her suspicion, because the SABC had not even been given the opportunity to present. The Committee wanted to engage in detail, and for Mr Molala to say already that they were lying and would not give them answers was a problem.

As a Member of the Committee, she wanted to approach this problem with a very objective stance. They all knew the SABC was bloated as a result of history -- Hlaudi Motsoeneng and his accomplices and the ANC. National Treasury had said that they should cut their wage bill, and she would like to be presented with information from the SABC and engage with this information. If they did not give the correct answers, she would like to ask them again. The SABC staff should also come, so that the Committee had both sides of the story and were able to make fair judgments on the process.

Right now, all she was getting was the political instruction to halt retrenchments. The Minister had come and rubbished the SABC, without providing any written material for the Committee to engage on. Mr Molala had trashed the SABC, and had not even given them the opportunity to present – and she was very dissatisfied with the way this was being handled. She would like the Minister to send everything that she had just spoken about in writing to the Committee. She should not have read to them from her notes.

The SABC deserved a fair chance to speak to the Committee, and the staff should also be given this chance. The political agendas of the 2021 elections must be put aside. Could they deal with a public broadcaster which would most likely be broke by the end of the year, and peoples’ jobs were at risk? This was not the time to play politics. Peoples’ lives were involved, so the Committee should do their job as they had been elected to do, and conduct oversight. She would like to conduct oversight on the SABC today, so let them present and let her ask her questions, and if the Members were not happy, they could set another day aside for it, but what was happening here was completely unacceptable.

The Deputy Minister said she had told the SABC to suspend the Section 189 process so that it created an enabling environment to engage. It was an intervention that the shareholder was able to do, to make sure that there was an enabling environment between the employer and employees. The Department was aligned to the challenges that the SABC was confronted with. The important aspect was the rules of engagement. She did not want to be a delinquent Minister, and could not give wrong advice to Minister Ndabeni-Abrahams if she saw that certain steps had been missed. At the meeting on 17 July, the SABC had said that they had also concluded phase two of the skills audit, so the whole process was complete according to them. A clip of one employee on the skills audit had been made, and this should be shown to the Committee. The skills audit was complete, and one could not leave critical stakeholders behind. Were they doing things the right way, or was it being rushed?

Ms N Kubheka (ANC) commented that it was the Portfolio Committee who had said that the Deputy Minister should engage with the issues raised at the SABC. Mr Molala had presented his issues very clearly. The Deputy Minister and the Minister were the shareholder -- they were not just ordinary. All of the parties involved needed to work together. The Committee needed to get clear answers from the SABC. No one was instructing the other. Consulting had never been done in the manner that it was supposed to have been done. The matters the Committee had said the SABC should address, they had not done. That was what Mr Molala had raised -- asking the SABC to go back and deal with these issues. There was nothing wrong with what Mr Molala had said. R3.2 billion had been issued to the SABC, and the Committee needed feedback on what they had done with this. On one hand, the SABC seemed like it was hiring, and on the other it was retrenching. Maybe the issue of editorial policy had been dealt with in Parliament. She supported Mr Molala’s contention that the SABC should do the situation justice – she did not think the Committee was supposed to be here and be frustrated when engaging with these issues.

Dr M Ndlozi (EFF) said the presentation had been different to the last one received, as there were some aspects that gave feedback on the new editorial structure. He thought the SABC should be given an opportunity to present. They should flag what the Deputy Minister had said and give the SABC an opportunity to say what they had come to say, and deal with the concerns that the Deputy Minister had raised. They could then intelligently intervene, having listened to them.

The last time, he had asked the Deputy Minister how much the government owed the SABC for all of the Department’s coverage on COVID-19, and if this money had been given to the SABC. What had they done about this? The SABC was supposed to follow up on government expenditure on COVID-19 advertisements and public relations. He would like the Minister to respond on this and furnish the Committee with this information. He would like the Deputy Minister to confirm that the SABC and ANC had met to ask the SABC to withhold its retrenchment processes to save the image of the ANC, whether in the light of the 2016 or 2019 elections.

The directive on the wage bill was sadly a directive from the ANC government to the SABC as a condition to the bailout that they had received. It was almost forced, and if it could not do this, it had to provide some financially sound reasons for its own sustainability. This problem was almost upon them, because of the bailout conditions. The SABC must first complete a skills audit to avoid entering into improper employment contracts. What the Committee was demanding was a fair process. One could not just go to the SABC and start cutting jobs and punishing people who were critical of them.

He appreciated the commercial concerns of the public broadcaster, and the extent to which the market performed openly, and that they were harmed because of this. If they were commercially exposed in terms of what they planned, competitors would be able to sabotage them. If this was the case, it would not be wrong to write to the Speaker to hear if there was validity in this. Nobody exposed their commercial plans to everybody else. Only monopolies were able to survive with an open book. If there was validity to this, there was no problem with the Committee hearing this information in camera. They were hearing all sorts of things in the media and had received anonymous correspondence, but let the people of the SABC present and then the Committee could probe what they wanted. He wanted to hear them and respond. They had to listen to the SABC, the workers and the editorial forum, and then they must come back and respond. He thought it was a brilliant plan, and they should stick to it.

The Deputy Minister said she had been invited to the meeting by the SABC as a stakeholder, and it was public knowledge that the ANC had responded to this. As the Deputy Minister, and a shareholder, she had a responsibility to represent the Department and the ministry on issues that they thought had not been attended to properly. On what departments owed, for as long as the SABC was unable to disclose anything on the R140 million and what informed the R1.5 billion, she was hamstrung even though she wanted to assist, as she did not have the details. She added that there was no shareholder who could want his or her entity to fall flat.

Ms P Faku (ANC) said she fully agreed with Mr Molala and Ms Kubheka that the SABC must go back.

Ms Faku said there was a person on the video.

Ms Kubheka raised a point of order, and asked the Chairperson to ask Ms Van Damme to switch off her camera.

The Chairperson asked Ms Van Damme to switch off her camera.

Ms Van Damme said she would do no such thing, and that just because Ms Faku did not want to see her face she had to turn her camera off -- not a chance.

Ms Faku said she would proceed, and that Ms Van Damme could stay there.

The Chairperson said she could proceed, but that Ms Kubheka was just reminding the Committee so that it did not have destructive gestures.

Ms Kubheka said the Chairperson presented very clearly on the matter that the camera should be switched off when not speaking.

Ms Van Damme said Mr Molala had his camera on the whole time, but there was no problem with him, and that she would be keeping her camera on.

The Chairperson asked Ms Van Damme and Mr Molala to switch off their cameras in future.

Ms Faku thanked the Chairperson for his protection, and said again that she agreed with Mr Molala and Ms Kubheka that the SABC needed to go back and the SABC could not be allowed to present, particularly with the issues still unresolved. It was the same presentation they were getting. Why was the Committee creating a precedent by allowing them to present? Issues such as retrenchments affected the people of South Africa. They would be setting the wrong precedent, where the Department and the SABC did not agree on issues. What would they be listening to when there was disagreement between the stakeholder and the unions?

She thought they were wasting their time with this meeting. The SABC had to come back prepared and respond to the questions the Committee had asked in the past. They had outlined questions for the SABC, but they did not want to give them documents. She said this was not the fifth Parliament, but the sixth Parliament, and that Members read their documents.

The Chairperson asked Members to find common ground going forward. They should not be overtaken by media reports. The Committee had scheduled the SABC to report on its turnaround strategy at the previous meeting, and it had been agreed that they should respond to the questions. There was nothing wrong with Members addressing questions that they felt had not been answered in such a way that they could still have a proper discussion with the SABC. This was not about the Board and management of the SABC.

The SABC had raised an issue about DTT, and had made it clear that it was not in their control. They had also raised an issue with Sentech. Members were not clear on what the bailout was for. It was not like the Committee was informed by an election that came or did not come, but the reality was that as the Committee was doing its oversight on this, it had said it did not want to be populist, but it would rely on what was put before it, which was that the skills audit was not complete and there had not been sufficient engagement. The CCMA process was not the area where retrenchments were done, but was more the beginning of a consultation process and at the time, the Committee had said it was premature to issue letters of possible retrenchments. The Committee should stick to their mandate to monitor conditions that would help the SABC. The human resources (HR) conditions were not something the Committee had created.

The Chairperson asked Mr Molala to clarify his point on the presentation.

Mr C Mackenzie (DA) said the Committee’s discussion seemed quite bizarre. The engagements took place between the shareholder and the board, not with the Committee. The Committee did not get involved in operations and planning at the SABC, or any state-owned entity. They engaged on performance plans and turnarounds plans, but they did not tell them how to do it. When the SABC appeared before them originally, the Committee had asked how they could retrench without a skills audit. The SABC had agreed this would be done. Dr Ndlozi’s input on this had been very valuable. The Committee had heard many Members talking about lies, but no one had pointed out what was a lie, and who had told it. A lot of words had been thrown around, but very little substance and facts. He supported Dr Ndlozi and Ms Van Damme on this, as well as the Chairperson’s summary, which was summarised perfectly. He urged the Committee to get the SABC to present so they could engage, and if they have any questions, they could come back with the answers.

Mr Molala said he wanted to clarify two issues. The Deputy Minister had not gone just as a shareholder -- the Committee had asked for this. Perhaps they should look at their records. When they said the SABC were lying, they were looking at the media where the SABC had said they had finalised the skills audit, but at the Committee meeting they had said there was 70% to 80% of coverage, so who was telling the truth? Parliament looked like place where people could just say anything they wanted and then go, so this could not be allowed.

He did not want the Committee to be distracted by political issues. They were sitting here as Committee Members, and had to speak as such. If they wanted to discuss politics, they could take it to another platform. Do not engage him at a party level -- engage him on the issues he had raised. He was saying the Committee had raised a number of issues, and none of them had been responded to at either the last meeting or now. They were having meeting after meeting with the SABC, discussing the same issues.

Dr Ndlozi had made a progressive point on the issue of the commercial arm. Many companies declare the profit they have made. Why in this instance could a declaration not be made on the profit the SABC had made? The Committee did not need the details of where they had invested, but just needed to know if the commercial arm was profitable. The SABC could not come to Parliament and say one thing and then go to the media saying something else, while the Members were expected to sit and listen to them.

At the last meeting, Dr Ndlozi had raised a serious matter on the sabotage of the President, and he had seconded him, and he had not been responded to. He was not saying that the SABC should be chased away and not come back, but that the SABC must respect Parliament. Let them respond to questions, because the Committee were acting on behalf of the country. The public wanted to know why the government was always giving the SABC money, and where the money was going. Why were they wasting peoples’ time and money sitting in meetings, and not getting answers?

He suggested that if Ms Van Damme and Dr Ndlozi could tell him whether they had had a response on the bailout, then the SABC should proceed and present, otherwise the Committee were doing a merry-go-round. If there were further questions, they could write to them. They should not get side-tracked by the ANC mandate. He was not talking about the ANC mandate, but about the questions they had asked in Parliament. There was a restructuring of non-core assets which the National Treasury had said would help the SABC raise some money. Had this restructuring happened, had the core assets been sold, and had the SABC made money?

Ms Van Damme said it was very simple. If Mr Molala, Ms Faku and Ms Kubheka did not have questions for the SABC, they should sit quietly, as they were not obliged to ask questions. The SABC was present, and they had a presentation. Maybe Mr Molala felt his questions had not been answered, which was why he had to ask those questions and get those answers. There was also an opportunity to submit additional questions. The Committee would be doing a grave injustice to the SABC and its staff if, as the body in charge of conducting oversight, they did not ask the questions that many people were waiting for.

The Chairperson had summarised the issues well. The SABC was here, and Members could ask it questions. There were those who felt like they did not want to ask questions, and their questions had not been answered, but she did not know how they would know that their questions had not been answered before asking them. Maybe there was some other reason why they wanted to delay this meeting, but that was their problem. If they did not want the SABC here, why had they invited them?

 She had had one question for the Minister while red herring arguments were raised about the commercial arm of the SABC. Dr Ndlozi had said he was providing a solution, not just problems which the ANC Members kept bringing up. Mr Molala was bringing up all these problems instead of providing solutions. The SABC should be allowed to present so Members could ask their questions. She also wanted the Deputy Minister to explain why she had not included in her presentation that an SABC board member had resigned.

Mr Molala raised a point of order, saying that he had raised issues which had been raised by the Committee, and not issues raised by himself.

Ms Van Damme attempted to interject, but Mr Molala stopped her, saying he was talking. Ms Van Damme attempted to interject again.

Ms Kubheka said Ms Van Damme should “shut up,” and “wena, you don’t listen.”

Ms Van Damme repeated “shut up,” and Ms Khubeka said “yes, shut up, you were out of order and don’t want to give other people the space.” She should not undermine the other Members.

Members all shouted comments at the same time.

The Chairperson called them all to order.

Ms Van Damme said Members must not be emotional.

Ms Faku said Ms Van Damme should go to her home, as “we were not emotional.”

Ms Van Damme then shouted back her.

The Chairperson asked Ms Van Damme to allow Mr Molala to speak.

Mr Molala repeated that the issues he had raised were not his own. Each time Ms Van Damme spoke she had referred to him. These issues had been raised by Committee Members, and he had just happened to note them. They had gone through the issues which the SABC would present. Ms Van Damme was twisting what he was saying every time. He did know what the problem was.

Ms Van Damme raised a point of order, saying that Mr Molala was not the spokesperson for the Committee. He was raising his own points.

Ms Kubheka said Ms Van Damme was not the spokesperson.

Ms Van Damme asked why she was being emotional.

Members continued to shout comments at each other at the same time.

Ms Kubheka said Ms Van Damme was undermining people.

Ms Faku shouted that Ms Van Damme should not irritate them.

Ms Van Damme asked what Ms Faku was going to do to her, and that she should keep quiet.

The Chairperson asked everyone to mute their microphones and switch off their cameras. He asked Members to focus on the matter at hand and minimise exchanges that did not help the Committee to move forward. If they all spoke and switched their cameras on, they were sending the wrong message to South Africans when they had another matter before them. If he called Ms Van Damme’s name, she should respect the Chair and allow the Chair to make a ruling on the matter, and he expected the same from all other Members. South Africans expected an answer on the SABC matter. He emphasised that this was not about the leadership of the SABC board or the executive, but about solutions to reposition the SABC. He urged Members to also respect speakers on the platform. He asked Ms Faku to continue.

Ms Faku said there were contradictions, and it seemed that there had not been engagement between the Department and the SABC on many issues that the Committee had raised, particularly on the question Dr Ndlozi had raised on how the SABC and government were working during COVID-19. This question had been raised and had never been responded to, and it was not part of the presentation. The questions raised by Mr Molala were also not part of the presentation. They were here to play their role as Members of Parliament and public representatives, not to satisfy other Members who thought they knew better than them.

She had also asked the same question as Dr Ndlozi, and to date she still did not have an answer. This included the issue of the skills audit, and engagement with the SABC and unions. People must not be emotional when Members raise issues. They were saying that they understood the bailout was not to pay salaries, but to assist the SABC to move forward. From the start, she had raised the issue of legal costs, and also had still not received an answer. The SABC should go back and respond to the issues the Committee had raised. She could refer to dates where the Committee had engaged with the SABC, and none of these issues had been responded to. It was already 8pm, and the Committee would not be able to engage the SABC in the way that it wanted to in an hour. She proposed that the meeting be closed.

Ms Kubheka said there were a lot of questions to be asked, but they could not be asked without a response to the questions which the Committee had asked in the last meeting. Let the SABC go back to formulate these responses. How many people would be retrained, reskilled and redeployed? What was the Department’s stance on this? Let them go back to prepare these answers.

Dr Ndlozi said Members had made sense on the requests for what the SABC presentation should focus on. There were aspects which they would all be interested in. It was true the presentation did not give a detailed response on the skills audit, and it looked like the SABC was saying that the skills audit was not done. He was interested in the new editorial policy, and they had not heard anything on this as the Committee had not gone to the launch with the media. Perhaps the SABC could speak to this. There was no way that a meaningful conversation could be had with the SABC in an hour.

The SABC should commit to streamlining their presentation and addressing the Committee’s specific questions. What Mr Molala and other Members were saying was not incorrect. What the SABC should come back and present on must be put in writing, and there must not be an excuse that the SABC had not presented today so the Committee would not to listen to the stakeholders on Wednesday. He pleaded with the Committee not to do the same thing the following day. The SABC should answer the Committee’s questions and those that would be asked by other stakeholders the following day in its next meeting with the Committee. Could they clearly articulate what they wanted from the SABC’s presentation? He proposed that the Committee proceed in this way.

The Chairperson summarised what Members had said.

Ms Van Damme said she would like the Committee’s disagreement to be put on record.

Ms Faku interjected, and asked why she was always speaking to the Committee.

Ms Van Damme shouted that Ms Faku should keep quiet and asked what was wrong with her.

Members all shouted at each other at the same time again.

The Chairperson said he had summarised how the meeting would be concluded.

Ms Van Damme said now she was answering his question.

Mr Molala said Ms Van Damme should listen to the Chairperson first.

Members all spoke at the same time.

The Chairperson said if Ms Van Damme had a problem with him, she could follow procedure and write to him.

Ms Van Damme said the Chairperson had given her the opportunity to speak and was now changing his mind.

Members all shouted “No!”

Ms Van Damme insisted Members had failed the SABC. They had come in their study group and decided that they did not want the SABC to speak.

Members all made comments at the same time, and Mr Molala said Ms Van Damme was not the spokesperson of the Committee.

The Chairperson said Members could continue to talk to each other, but the meeting was closed.

Outstanding agenda item

The Committee Secretary said the Committee still needed to deal with item one on the agenda.

The Chairperson said the meeting was closed, as Members had proposed this. This was a different point which referred to the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA). The Committee had already discussed this, and the matter had been agreed upon, unless there was a Member who disagreed. 

Mr Mackenzie asked the Chairperson to recognise Ms Van Damme.

Ms Van Damme said that at the last meeting, the recommendations had been agreed upon, but not the full report. She assumed that was why it had been added to the agenda, and that it was now just inconvenient, since the Chairperson had closed the meeting. The report had not been formally adopted by the Committee

The Chairperson said he heard what Ms Van Damme was trying to do, which was to go back to a point which had been covered.

Ms Van Damme raised a point of order, saying she was not doing this -- she was saying the report had not been formally adopted.

Members said the report should be adopted tomorrow.

Members shouted at each other at the same time.

Ms Van Damme said the Chairperson needed to protect her, and that she was sick and tired of Ms Faku constantly attacking her. She said the Chairperson had done nothing about this.

Ms Kubheka asked the Chairperson to close the meeting.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting. 

 

 

 

 

 

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