PBO Director Vacancy: Subcommittee Recommendation Adopted

Standing Committee on Appropriations

03 November 2020
Chairperson: Mr S Buthelezi (ANC) and Mr J Maswanganyi (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

Commttee Report on Appointment of the Director of the Parliamentary Budget Office

In this virtual meeting, the four Finance and Appropriations Committees met jointly to receive a briefing on the Subcommittee’s recommendation for the Parliamentary Budget Office Director position.

The report recommended that Dr Dumisani Jantjies be appointed as Director of the Parliamentary Budget Office with effect from 01 December 2020.

It was agreed that there would be a joint report adoption from the two Standing Committees and a joint report adoption from the two Select Committees

The Standing Committee on Finance and Standing Committee on Appropriations jointly adopted the report on the appointment of the PBO Director.  The Democratic Alliance and Freedom Front Plus objected to the Report.

Meeting report

Consideration of recommendation on appointment of the PBO Director
Advocate Mongana Tau, Unit Manager, Parliament, briefed Members on the process undertaken regarding the appointment of the PBO Director. In his presentation he elaborated on the qualification verification of candidates, the vetting results, the Acting Secretary to Parliament’s response to the Subcommittee’s letter, submissions to the Subcommittee and the correspondence from one of the unsuccessful candidates during shortlisting. In total, 9 candidates were shortlisted, 3 withdrew and the 4th candidate, Professor Daniel Plaatjies, passed on. The qualifications of the remaining candidates were confirmed.

Chairperson Buthelezi listed the Members of the Subcommittee on Appointment of PBO Director. The recommended candidates for director, in order of preference, are Dr Dumisani Jantjies, Dr Nelia Orlandi and Dr Seeraj Mohamed.

Mr Z Mlenzana (ANC) asked whether the subcommittee had unanimity during its voting process

Chairperson Buthelezi replied that out of the 7 Members of the Subcommittee, 6 voted as presented in the report. There was an opposing view from one Member, stating that the post needs to be re-advertised and the process should begin anew. An anonymous submission from Parliament Watch was similar to the minority view and stated that the candidates presented do not have the necessary skills and capacity for the post, therefore, it should be advertised again. The Subcommittee considered this and majority is of the strong view that there is no need to re-advertise and interview candidates anew.

The Committee Secretariat read pages 5 and 6 of the report, containing the summary of the Subcommittee deliberations and its recommendation.

Mr Ryder asked for guidance on the process of adopting the report, as the Subcommittee is made up of Members from 4 Committees and from different houses. Will voting be joint or within each committee?

Ms Estelle Grunewald, The Select Committee on Appropriations Secretariat, replied that in the past each of the 4 committees adopted the report separately. However, Advocate Frank Jenkins advised a joint report adoption from the 2 Standing Committees and a joint report adoption from the 2 Select Committees.

Advocate Jenkins advised that the safer route would be to have a mover and seconder for each committee and each committee send its own report to the House. The rules do not specify for a joint adoption, unless there is a referral from the Houses for it. He explained that his earlier suggestion was for the convenience of the Standing and Select Committees in reporting to the Houses.

Mr Y Carrim (ANC; KZN) suggested that the Standing Committees adopt the report and then the Select Committees adopt the report.

Chairperson Maswanganyi agreed with Mr Y Carrim’s suggestion.

Joint Adoption of the Report by the Standing Committees on Finance and Appropriations

The report recommended that Dr Dumisani Jantjies be appointed as Director of the Parliamentary Budget Office with effect from 01 December 2020.

Chairperson Maswanganyi proposed the adoption of the report for the Standing committees

Ms P Abrahams (ANC) moved for the adoption of the report with the amendments.

Mr Mlenzana seconded the motion.

Mr G Hill-Lewis (DA) objected on the basis of being in agreement with the minority view.

The FF+ objected to the report.

The report was agreed to by the majority.

Read the full Report

The meeting was adjourned.



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