The Committee discussed at length the matters arising from its 12 May meeting where the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) had requested the Committee to use its oversight function to investigate if there was interference by the Minister in the SASCOC mandate. This involved the intervention by the Minister citing section 13 of the National Sport and Recreation Act to move towards deregistering CSA. Some Members wanted the Committee to investigate if the Minister was interfering in SASCOC affairs and seek legal opinion on section 13 to establish the facts. The majority contended it was the Minister's mandate to intervene in the matter. The discussion became heated with some accusing the Minister of not taking the Committee seriously when it wrote requesting he meet with SASCOC. All Members agreed that the Minister should be written to again about a progress report on meeting with SASCOC.
The Department of Sports, Arts and Culture (DSAC) presented its Quarter 3 Performance Report. It had 23 performance targets in Quarter 3 and 65% (15/23) were achieved and 35% (8/23) were unachieved. The unachieved targets included processing 100% COVID relief for athletes, coaches and technical personnel and many others. In Quarter 1 at the peak of the pandemic it saw a 25% achievement, which sky rocketed in Quarter 2 to 83% due to easing of lockdown restrictions, and with Quarter 3 at 65%. In the overview of programme performance, Administration and Heritage Promotion and Preservation achieved 100% of targets, with Recreation Development and Sports Promotion achieving 38% and Arts and Culture Promotion and Development achieving 70%. It had spent 70% of its 2021/20 adjusted budget by the end of Quarter 3.
The Department update on the third phase of its COVID-19 relief funding had to be deferred due to the lengthy discussion about the Minister and SASCOC.
The Chairperson expressed her dismay following the kicking incident at the Pan-African Parliament. In her view we are far from resolving the gender based violence pandemic. However, she found consolation in knowing that not all man partake in GBV. Although we may have differences, such behaviour from a man in that position of responsibility and leadership was embarrassing. The Committee condemns it and they are going to make noise about it. It is clear that even at his home he cannot have a decent discussion without resorting to violence. GBV is real and women should not allow themselves to be punch bags. She also warned Members about resurgence of COVID-19 which has now drawn us into the third wave and advised those over the age of 60 to get vaccinated. Members were reminded to follow COVID-19 protocols, and contribute to the fight against the pandemic by donating masks to the poor communities as they did their daily work. In some schools less fortunate children are sent back home because they do not have masks.
Apologies were made on behalf of the Minister who could not attend due to other official commitments and the Deputy Minister was unwell.
The Committee adopted 12 May minutes and in matters arising, Mr T Mhlongo (DA) asked what is the status of the request by the SASCOC President at the meeting for the Committee to assist on establishing if the Minister intervention on the Cricket SA MOI. What is going to be done about that? Did SASCOC meet the Minister? He sent an email to the Chairperson about this on 12 May but no response was given.
The Chairperson replied that she had written a letter to the Minister’s office about SASCOC and the response was that it was noted and they will make time when the Minister’s diary is open to meet with SASCOC. The Committee had agreed to assist, but before it could, the Minister’s Office had written a letter to acknowledge the request and was willing to meet up with SASCOC. However, SASCOC wrote a letter and the Committee was misrepresented in the letter. She saw the SASCOC letter two weeks later and what it said about the Committee was untrue.
It does not really matter now, what matters is if SASCOC finally met with the Minister. They would hear from the Director General if the meeting occurred. She apologised about the failure to respond to Mr Mhlongo’s email and indicated that she opens her emails on a regular basis and she communicates with her office as well. As a way forward, she would improve on that and ensure her office takes note of emails from Members. She asked the DG to confirm if the Minister finally had a meeting with SASCOC.
Mr Vusumuzi Mkhize, DSAC Director-General, confirmed that the Minister received the communiqué from the Chairperson , but the meeting has not materialised yet. The Minister is willing to meet with SASCOC, but due to time constraints of other pressing issues such as Cricket SA, he has not been able to do so. The Minister will have the meeting with SASCOC at an appropriate time and once the date is set or meeting is held, it will be communicated to the Chairperson . There is no objection to the meeting and the Minister has communicated that to both the Chairperson and SASCOC. He is fully committed to both SASCOC and the Committee.
Mr T Mhlongo (DA) acknowledged the responses and clarified his question on the Committee’s promise to assist. SASCOC asked the Committee to mediate on the issue of the Minister. That is what the minutes state was the request.
Mr M Seabi (ANC) suggested the Committee needs to leave it there and wait for an update since the Chairperson had written a letter to the Minister in line with the wishes of the Portfolio Committee and SASCOC and the Minister indicted his willingness to meet. The matter should be resumed once a progress report is received.
Mr Mhlongo said the Committee must have a time line and the Minister should prioritise matters pertaining to the Committee. This is a sensitive issue because SASCOC did not approve the Cricket SA Memorandum of Incorporation. The Minister must prioritise this because it will catch up with the Committee. He suggested that they have a timeline instead of waiting for the Minister who does not even attend the Committee meeting. He proposed they must have something by the end of June otherwise the Minister will have to account as this is an urgent matter that must be solved.
Mr Seabi said they did not have to go to the extent of instructing the Minister on what he should do. The Chairperson advised that the Minister agreed that to meet with SASCOC at an appropriate time. Thus, the matter should be left at that point to avoid going to the extent of instructing the Minister on what to do. The Committee will be overreaching if it does that. They should be mindful of the line between the Executive and Parliament.
Ms M Khawula (EFF) speaking in IsiZulu said with all due respect, this thing of the Minister “willing” to discuss matters should not be discussed. A letter is written to request an explanation and the Minister is sent to SASCOC by the Committee. He should be telling the Committee that he went to SASCOC instead of talking about “willing” as this means it can happen whenever. The Minister must know that the Committee needs answers on a matter that it finds unsatisfactory because there are many Committee concerns that the Minister should prioritise. She is thankful that the Chairperson wrote a letter to the Minister, but he should show that he understands a letter is written to get a reply and an explanation. As a Minister he should be telling them he went to SASCOC. What is preventing him from going where he has been sent?
Mr Mhlongo agreed with Ms Khawula that the Minister should not be telling the Committee that he is willing, but must make it a point to do so. It is not overreaching because he must account to the Committee. He must be instructed to come and account to the Committee because he has been absent from meetings as well. The Minister must be given a turnaround time. It is not encroaching to say come and account to us on a certain day. It is oversight work that the Committee is doing. He did not support Mr Seabi, and proposed that the Minister must come and account in June. “Willing” is not giving a specific date, there must be a specific date that by the end of June the two must meet and report back to the Committee.
Ms V Malomane (ANC) said the Chairperson has written a letter to the Minister and he responded. Some Members are saying the Minister must be given a date. Her proposal is that the Committee gets a full response when it returns from recess.
Mr B Madlingozi (EFF) agreed with Ms Khawula and Mr Mhlongo that the Minister needs to be given an ultimatum to come and be with the Committee. They have not had the Minister in the Committee meeting for a while and they have been waiting patiently to hear what is going on with him. They have been having an Acting Minister which does not look good at all. Can we stand our ground and demand that the Minister account to us instead of waiting for him?
Mr Seabi said if the proposal by Members is to have the Minister to come and account, then that is within their rights as the Committee, he will support the proposal. But, if it is to give the Minister an ultimatum to say on this day meet with so and so, then he would not support such a proposal. That is what he meant by “overreaching”.
The Chairperson said she was taking again the mandate of the Committee to write again to the Minister emphasising that the Committee is asking he must meet with SASCOC as it is now overdue and he must prioritise it. She promised to write to the Minister immediately after the meeting as she always does when she has to write letters or emails. The representatives of the Minister were here especially the DG who is just below the Ministry and she was glad that he heard what the Members said. The Committee asks for the correct engagement and the Chairperson does not write what she wants but what she is told by the Committee. She will do just that.
Mr D Joseph (DA) followed up on Mr Mhlongo’s point that SASCOC requested the Committee investigates if the Minister's intervention contravened the Act by interfering. As the request was made to the Committee, is the Committee going to write to SASCOC to say it is not within our mandate or that our mandate indicates that the Minister did not contravene that Act? Whatever the response, it was only right that it responded to SASCOC.
Ms Khawula referred to the Chairperson's comment about the presence of the DG. However, the Minister and the DG are two different people. When the Minister is not here, the DG will not always be able to respond to matters that require the Minister. The Minister must respect the Committee and when they write a letter to him he must take it as it is and not talk about being "willing".
She said to Mr Seabi that the Committee does not protect the Minister or anyone, but represents the people. The Department is supposed to be progressing but it is going down. One hears about ministers abusing public funds because they did not want to be overseen by a parliamentary committee. We are aware of such things that are happening. The Minister must learn to respect the Committee that oversees him.
The Chairperson told the Members that she was thinking of closing the matter [41:47-42:46 spoken in her vernacular language].
Mr Mhlongo told the Chairperson that she can write that letter, but what he wants is the Minister to come and account to the Committee. The letter must not just request him to meet but must have a timeline with specific dates because they need feedback from the Minister. The Committee should also get a response on the email mentioned by Mr Joseph.
The Chairperson reminded Members about the Committee meeting that Cricket SA and SASCOC were in before dealing with the email raised by Mr Joseph. The Committee engaged with both entities and CSA finally agreed on the amended Memorandum of Incorporation (MOI). SASCOC was in the meeting if you remember, we had given them chance to meet each other. She did not know if the Committee wants to open that matter again because they were both here and CSA adhered to what was agreed. But even on that day, SASCOC was not happy. This is the question before the Committee.
Mr Seabi said that some Members expressed vividly in that meeting that they supported the move by the Minister because it contributes towards transformation. In the budget debate in the National Assembly they still said that the Minister is on the right track. SASCOC is showing the Minister the middle finger because the key here is that CSA agreed. The Committee must move on but SASCOC wants to reverse the process. There is no need to write to SASCOC again because Members had already made it clear in that meeting that they support the move by the Minister as it contributes towards transformation and that is what Members are here for. His proposal was the matter should not be opened.
Mr Mhlongo said that there were two views on the table. SASCOC asked them to investigate. It is the norm whenever they are asked by an entity, they always do so even if it means seeking legal advice to clarify if it was an intervention or interference. He proposed that the Committee moves for that and then take it from there. It aligned with the letter dated 12 May to the Chairperson which said as an oversight committee they are allowed to investigate or come with a mechanism to establish if it was an intervention or interference. This will allow the Committee as an oversight committee to do oversight over the Minister. He differed with Mr Seabi especially as the discussion is on matters arising not the budget debate. Are we taking up the SASCOC request or not? He proposed they respond to SASCOC and agree to investigate.
Mr M Zondi (ANC) said the Committee cannot investigate the Minister, but it can have a fact finding mission as part of oversight. He felt it was not within the Committee’s mandate to investigate the Minister. The Committee’s role is playing oversight not investigation. Members had made it clear that they supported the Minister on the intervention and they still support him as he did not interfere with the SASCOC or CSA affairs. He intervened because some Members demanded way back there should be transformation. When that transformation was not happening, the Minister intervened. The Minister will always be supported when he intervenes but not when he interferes with the affairs of an institution. They were clear on the matter and the only issue they were not clear on was the budget. It was made clear before the budget because the Minister went to the Committee twice to explain how the intervention came about. He was supported based on that, not out of love. He is supported based on the transformational agenda, nothing else.
Mr Madlingozi said he had a problem with the Minister reneging. He should have cut off the CSA; he was doing an intervention there which is acceptable. He actually did it very late. This should have been done a long time ago because CSA has not been responding and respecting the Ministry and the black players in sport. But he disappointed by the turnaround. The Minister should avail himself to the Committee more often so that all matters are dealt with. He proposed the Committee moved to the next agenda item.
Mr Mhlongo asked the Chairperson to note Members’ objections as the request for investigation was because they are not sure if it was intervention or interference. Transformation should not be used as the basis because the Department uses the Eminent Persons Group (EPG) for transformation. The issues should not be mixed. The Department uses EPG to see the measurement of transformation. The MOI is a constitutional matter which must be approved by SASCOC. The Minister went to the CSA meeting and told the members how to vote and that is not transformation. You cannot put a gun to members of any entity.
The Chairperson said in the last meeting CSA did not say the Minister told them how to vote. They are leaders and cannot be forced to vote.
Mr Seabi agreed and called Mr Mhlongo to order. He cannot tell the Members that they do not understand because they will use the same words against him.
Mr Mhlongo said it is uncalled for that they can investigated when it suits some Members, but they cannot investigate the Minister. He was only stating SASCOC’s request to investigate if it is interference or intervention. He suggested the Committee gets an independent adviser on the matter and stop mixing issues. Transformation uses EPG, the issue is not transformation, but the MOI which SASCOC did not approve. The Minister used the Act to revoke and put pressure. Was this interference or intervention? SASCOC wanted the Committee to find out what it is. He proposed the Committee get a legal adviser to help settle the matter and get back to SASCOC with feedback. This is in line with email he sent to the Chairperson to which she did not respond.
The Chairperson said she does not respond to emails on matters already decided on in a Committee meeting. For instance, CSA never said that the Minister forced them to implement the MOI. The Minister was in the meeting on that day and explained. The CSA leaders cannot be forced by another leader to do something. In the Committee meeting, they had already told the Minister that his intervention was late as both parties were still in disagreement on Section 13. However, the Minister met with CSA and came to an agreement. It was only SASCOC that was still unhappy. If the affected party was happy, how was she supposed to respond to that email without bringing it to this Committee? On transformation, that target was not met. According to how that section was explained, a decision was made to use the Minister’s power to enforce transformation. They were given a chance to come to terms since 2020. Even when they came to agreement, SASCOC remained unhappy.
Ms Malomane agreed with Mr Madlingozi’s proposal to close the discussion on the matter. The Chairperson had already concluded by promising to write another letter to the Minister.
Mr Madlingozi agreed that the matter must be closed. He disagreed with Mr Mhlongo about bringing in a legal aspect to the matter. Who is going to pay for it? The Minister had to put his foot down to enforce transformation. He proposed they move on.
Mr Mhlongo explained that the Committee does not need money to get a Parliament legal advisor as it is one of the resources at its disposal. For the Committee to get clarity, the legal fundi should be used at no cost. If SASCOC or any federation requests technical assistance or a fact finding mission, it should be assisted. SASCOC asked the Committee to find out if the MOI was interference or intervention. He asked that the minutes reflect that some Members reserve their right that the Committee must do as per SASCOC's request. He asked their objection to be noted as they do not support the Committee's move not to establish a fact finding mission on whether it was interference or intervention. No budget is required for such a fact finding mission.
Mr Seabi clarified that they were not confused as it was stated that the Minister intervened. So there is nothing to investigate. It was correctly stated that the Committee is doing oversight and it has already decided that the Minister should come to the Committee and clarify certain things. As such, there is no need to write a letter to SASCOC as it was decided in its presence that the Minister intervened and did not interfere.
Mr Mhlongo interjected that Mr Seabi must speak for himself as they do not share the same view.
The Chairperson called Mr Mhlongo to order saying the Members have been respecting him despite his lack of respect.
Mr Mhlongo apologised and said Mr Seabi must speak for himself not for all the Members.
The Chairperson expressed her displeasure at Mr Mhlongo's behaviour which was out of order. He has been stating things that are not true and other Members allowed him to, but now he kept on interrupting other Members. She denied him the point of order as she felt that he was denying Mr Seabi an opportunity to respond to him. She told him to respect the Chairperson's ruling when she says it is not a point of order.
Mr Seabi emphasised that Members were not confused and there was no need to write to SASCOC as the decision was made in its presence. He proposed the Committee moved forward.
Mr Mhlongo said he has a right to raise his views as any other Member. If anyone felt he was wasting their time, they should excuse themselves from the meeting. He went back to his email and asked the Chairperson to state the contents of his email, since she read his email.
Ms Malomane said that Members agreed that the matter be concluded to move to the agenda of the day. Mr Mhlongo is now holding the Committee back; they want to carry on with meeting and do their oversight work well.
Mr Mhlongo asked the Chairperson if she is sustaining his request. Am I out of order? What is your ruling? When someone interjects, the Chairperson must be consistent.
The Chairperson asked Mr Mhlongo not to guide her on how to do her job. He was out of order and no Member was behaving like him.
Mr Mhlongo replied that since he is still on the platform he will still ask questions. What did his email say? Can we write emails to you or not? What was my letter saying? You have responded as if you know what the letter was saying.
The Chairperson replied his email was about what the Committee was discussing. She had already told him that she did not respond as Members had already made a decision. He had nothing to put on the table and he kept taking them backwards, yet there were other important issues to deliberate on. She was closing the matter by reiterating the decision of Members that the Minister intervened, not interfered. No letter will be written to SASCOC as it was present when a collective decision was made on the matter. She indicated that she has taken note of Mr Mhlongo and his colleagues’ objection to the decision of the Committee.
Ms Khawula said if Mr Mhlongo is unsatisfied by some issues [1:15:36 -1:16:06].
The Chairperson closed the discussion.
Department of Sport, Arts and Culture 2020/21 Quarter 3 Performance
Mr Vusumuzi Mkhize, DSAC Director-General, introduced his team and explained that the Department Quarter 3 report it is presenting has been overtaken by events as they have already finalised Quarter 4 and the Annual Report of 2020/21. As such, some of the unachieved targets have already been achieved. The Department was launching that morning Youth month in Soweto in commemoration of the loss of life at the hands of the Apartheid regime. The actual June 16 event headed by the President will be held in Msunduzi District in KZN. The lives lost on that day should be remember as they contributed to the democracy we have. He highlighted that COVID-19 has had an impact on the performance of the Department.
The Department had 23 performance targets in Quarter 3 and 65% (15/23) were achieved and 35% (8/23) were unachieved. The unachieved targets included processing 100% COVID relief for athletes, coaches and technical personnel. In a comparative analysis, in Quarter 1 at the peak of the pandemic saw a 25% achievement, which sky rocketed in Quarter 2 to 83% due to easing of lockdown restrictions with Quarter 3 at 65%.
In the overview of programme-specific performance, Administration and Heritage Promotion and Preservation achieved 100% of their targets, with Recreation Development and Sports Promotion achieving 38% and Arts and Culture Promotion and Development achieving 70%.
Quarter 3 Expenditure Report
Ms Sibongile Mondile, Acting CFO, presented:
• Overall spending is R3.7 billion (70%) against the Adjusted Appropriation of R5.3 billion at 31 December 2020. This compared to prior year spending of R4.1 billion (72%). There is a decrease of 2% in expenditure and it is attributed to cancellation of department events due to lockdown.
• Compensation of employees: Spending was R247.9m (65%) against the Adjusted Appropriation of R380.3m. Prior year expenditure was R262.4m (69%) showing a 4% decrease as a result of the merger of the two Departments where there is now one Minister, Deputy Minister and DG. Critical posts were advertised but this was put on hold due to lockdown.
• Goods and Services: Spending was R275.7m (59%) against the Adjusted Appropriation of 469.8m. Prior year expenditure was R421.4m (66%), there is a decrease of 7% and this is due to cancellation of departmental events due to Covid-19 lockdown.
• Departmental Agencies and Accounts: Spending was R1.6 billion (74%) against the Adjusted Appropriation of R2.1 billion. Expenditure is in line with previous yet with a decrease of 1.1%.
• Departmental Agencies and Accounts: Spending was R61.2m (50%) against an Adjusted Appropriation of R122.4m. Expenditure decreased in comparison to the prior financial year of R82.8m (31%) due to Covid-19 lockdown. Major budget reductions were effected towards Covid-19 relief response funds.
• Provinces and Municipalities: Expenditure of R1.3 billion (86%) against Adjusted Appropriation of R1.5 billion is for transfers for Community Libraries and Mass Participation Conditional Grants. Compared to prior financial year of R1.7 billion (79%), there was an increase of 7% for transfers to provinces made on business plans as submitted by provinces.
• Higher Education Institutions: Expenditure was R2.4m (36%) against Adjusted Appropriation of R6.8m. Compared to prior year spending of R4.3m (96%), this was a 60% decline in expenditure. This was a result of Human Language Technology projects based on project plans.
• Higher Education Institutions: No expenditure for both financial years in Quarter 3. In the prior financial year there was an allocation of R4.4m for the construction of Chief Tyali monument administered by University of Fort Hare. The University did not submit the revised project proposal.
• Public Corporations & Private Enterprises: There is no expenditure against Adjusted Appropriation of R6.7m in 2020/21. Advice was sought from National Treasury to reclassify funds from this item to Non Profit Institution for a transfer to Development Bank of SA (DBSA) to implement the settlement agreement signed in terms of the Public Protector Act between South African Roadies Association (SARA) and DSAC for refurbishment of SARA House. Upon approval, a journal will be posted to correct a payment of R6.1m made to DBSA.
• Households: Expenditure of R15.5m (69%) against Adjusted Appropriation of R22.6m. Compared to prior year, an expenditure of R21.7m (62%) was incurred, there is an increase of 7%. The two financial year’s expenditure comparison in rand value is immaterial, and therefore the increase of 7% is as a result of the budget reductions towards Covid-19 response funds.
• Non Profit Institutions: There is an expenditure of R203m (43%) against the Adjusted Appropriation of R467m. Compared to prior year expenditure of R309.9m (83%), resulting in a decline of 40%. Funds could not be transferred to Sport Federations due to the process of creation of items for federations on the Standard Chart of Accounts by National Treasury. Funds could not be transferred to qualifying Mzansi Golden Economy (MGE) open call beneficiaries due to cancellation of events because of lockdown. The budget reduction was effected towards the Covid-19 response funds and some reprioritised towards the DSAC Relief Fund.
• Non Profit Institutions: Expenditure of R2.5m (13%) against the Adjusted Appropriation of R19.4m. In the prior year there was an expenditure of R3.7m (19%) resulting in a decrease of 6% due to the budget reductions towards Covid-19 response funds.
• Other machinery and equipment: Expenditure of R6.9m (35%) against the Adjusted Appropriation of R20.1m. Prior year expenditure was R2.9m (27%). There is an increase of 8% due to procurement of laptops for use by officials working from home during lockdown.
• Heritage Assets: Expenditure of R16.5m (16%) against the Adjusted Appropriation of R106.9m. In comparison to the prior year at the same time, an expenditure of R36.4m (23%) was incurred, resulting in a decline of 7% due to payments relating to the construction of the Sarah Baartman Centre of Remembrance in 2018/19 received by former DAC.
• Software and other intangible assets: No expenditure compared to prior year expenditure of R2.7m. The expenditure of the prior year is a payment made to SITA for the development of a Grants Management System and for the implementation of phase 2 of the National Automated Archival Information Retrieval System (NAAIRS) project.
• Payments for financial assets: Expenditure of R14 000 and was incurred versus a nil Adjusted Appropriation. Compared to prior year expenditure of R112 000 for damage to a rented car.
• Interest and rent on land: No expenditure compared to prior year expenditure of R1 000.
Mr Madlingozi said that the figures sound beautiful. On the spending of R3.7 billion, where was the money going to? Can that be explained? What criteria are used for recruiting Ministry advisors? How did China Mpololo become one of the advisors? DSAC mentioned software costs of R2.7 million, while the National Arts Council was struggling to assist artists just to log in for 4 hours and help themselves. How far are the results of the oversight done in April this year? Is DSAC protecting some individuals on embezzlement of funds earmarked for the relief of the creative and sports people? What is the situation on the Tokyo Olympic Games? What measures does DSAC have to protect creative artists from these collection societies?
Mr D Joseph (DA) noted overall spending of R3.7 billion was 70% for Quarter 3. The normal average was 75%. This is due to Programme 2. What percentage going to infrastructure facilities, community gyms and heritage sites was not achieved in Programme 2? He commended DSAC on the achievement of the target for bursaries for language practitioners and the heritage bursaries.
On the challenge of the provinces that do not provide the evidence on the participation in sports and recreation programmes, what are the expectations for the reporting evidence that DSAC needs? Is it counting heads, attendance register, photos, videos, media articles? What type of evidence is required? On the GBV campaign, what is the link to GBV when it comes to sport? On the underspending, can DSAC show us if there was an increase in spending in the last quarter?
Ms Malomane commended DSAC on the Quarter 1 and 4 achievements and encouraged it to continue with the good work. Even in the other two quarters they have achieved targets. On support for 35 municipalities, can they specify which municipalities so when we do oversight, we can check those municipalities for technical and management support? On GBV, can they indicate if the target of 295 is related to sport and recreation activities? Can we get specifications? On Programme 2 where only 38% of targets were achieved with under expenditure of 21%, what is the impact on sports development and participation? Did they use other means in the last quarter?
Mr Zondi welcomed the report saying it is clear where DSAC is going and he acknowledged the challenges experienced as indicated in the report. On the 35% targets not achieved, were these achieved in Quarter 4? On expenditure, are we anticipating under expenditure if we are at 70%? Are you going to spend the outstanding 30% in Quarter 4? If not, is the outstanding balance of your budget committed to Quarter 4 so that we do not have under expenditure at the end of the financial year?
Ms V Van Dyk (DA) asked the status of the delays in the payment to the contractor responsible for the Sarah Baartman Centre for Remembrance? Have these delays had an impact on the project? On the 470 bursaries for students registered for language studies, were any of these bursaries allocated to students for progress in sign language? She asked if Love Life has submitted its compliance documentation? She requested clarity on the GBV campaign – was it a sport event? How will DSAC resolve the non-submission of evidence by provinces for the number of people participating in sports and recreation and for the processing of the COVID-19 relief applications?
The Chairperson commended the DSAC presentation and submitting it on time, which is an indication that it is improving. On the R50.3m which was shifted from Programme 2 Recreation Development and Sports Promotion to the Arts and Heritage Programme, will this not have an impact on sports programmes given that the federations are struggling financially? In slide 25 where you talk about municipalities, are they doing well [2:30:14-2:30:52]? On the GBV campaign, what are you doing in your campaign? The Committee needs a full report now we see GBV in high profile places such as the Pan-African Parliament (PAP). On double dipping of funds, last time you said you had monitoring officials in place, but now you are complaining about them not reporting. Can you tell us how you are going to make them submit in advance? We have not heard what the provinces are doing about the monies to curb the complaints of the artists [2:33:42-2:35:18]. Are you ready to fill the 128 vacancies according to the budget for this financial year? DSAC cannot perform well with so many vacancies.
Mr Mhlongo asked what is the latest measurement of transformation in DSAC? Do they use EPG or not? How can a federation measure itself or set itself a transformation target and focus on a successful outcome for its transformation? He asked the DG what his understanding was of the MOI - what is the difference between MOI and transformation? When the artists visited your office, we were told that there was no representative to receive their petition. Why is that?
Mr Vusumuzi Mkhize replied that his team members were very capable in responding to Members' questions. On the filling of posts, he introduced the newly appointed Deputy Director General of Corporate Services, Ms Mandisa Tshikwatamba.
Ms Sumayya Khan, Deputy Director General: Recreation Development and Sport Promotion, replied that the Tokyo Olympics is scheduled to go ahead as planned and SASCOC is in charge of overseeing Team SA. Based on the report received from SASCOC, the planning is on track and last week it indicated the set of athletes who had already qualified. On funding, SASCOC indicated there are sponsors on board such as Mr Price which is taking care of some of Team SA clothing. SASCOC is in the process of procuring more sponsors. The International Olympic Committee and the International Paralympic Committee and the Japanese government have put measures in place to ensure safe games. SASCOC has appointed a COVID liaison officer as per guidelines. There is funding to give support to athletes from the National Lotteries Commission to targeted athletes they believe have the potential to bring in medals. DSAC is providing support to the targeted athletes with the potential to bring medals. There is no consideration of cancellation of the Games because there are contingences in place to ensure that the Games take place smoothly. DSAC will be meeting with SASCOC to get an update on state of readiness. The process of qualification of athletes is still ongoing.
On facilities and infrastructure, there are no targets set for Quarter 3 for community gyms, because when DSAC identified the sites, they were built and will be reported on in Quarter 4 that the target was achieved. This also applied to the heritage site; there was no target there as well. On the submission of evidence from provinces, what needs to be understood is that the first six indicators within Programme 2 of the Annual Performance Plan are customised indicators, meaning that all provinces would deliver on that indicator. DSAC is reliant on delivery through the conditional grant to the provinces. The provinces have to report to DSAC and provide monthly and quarterly reports. When they provide the quarterly reports they have to submit a portfolio of evidence. This could be their monthly reports or agreements signed especially with academies. It could be reports of activities or attendance registers at events or photographs or newspaper articles. It has been a challenging exercise because the evidence is bulky as most of it is sent as hard copies. In the first two quarters because there were no courier or postal services, it had been challenging getting information to DSAC on time. It has improved in Quarters 3 and 4.
The names of the 34 municipalities will be indicated and are listed in the Annual Performance Plan (APP) under the MIG under the municipalities that have contracts. The full list of facilities that have been built will be made available as not all of them are under the APP. The list will include project from previous years that are not yet completed.
LoveLife on an annual basis submits a business plan to DSAC and an amount is allocated to them. They sign an service level agreement (SLA) to submit reports on a quarterly basis and audited financial statements. LoveLife has submitted its business plan and an evaluation report for the last financial year. Its financial year ends in June, so by 30 June it is expected to submit audited financial statements. Its funding for the next year will be dependent on providing the audited financial statements.
The Transformation Charter adopted at the Sports Indaba in 2011 appointed the Eminent Persons Group (EPG) on Transformation in Sport. There are 19 federations under the EPG [2:50:30 – 2:56:29 network problem].
The Chairperson asked someone to respond to the shifting of R50.3 million from Programme 2.
Mr Mkhize replied that if one looks at the targets during the time of Quarter 3, there were indeed challenges and DSAC could not implement. Therefore, the money was shifted based on that. It was clear that a number of programmes could not be maintained. Of the eight targets that were not achieved, the majority were under Programme 2.
Mr Vusithemba Ndima, DDG: Heritage Promotion and Preservation, replied that the delay with the Sarah Baartman Centre of Remembrance has indeed had an impact as it brought about an increase in the budget. DSAC depends on its sister department, the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure, as its implementing agent. The delay is unacceptable as it was handed over in 2014 and supposed to be completed in 2016. In the process, so many things have gone wrong. For instance, the first contractor that was supposed to complete the work had a cash flow problem and had to be withdrawn from the contract. A new contractor was hired, but had to deal with poor work by the previous contractor. DSAC has actually stood firm and refused to pay for things that resulted from poor execution of work. There have been several engagements with Public Works which started at the management level and then escalated to DG level to push for implementation of the work. The matter has even been elevated to ministerial level and a meeting was held last month to establish why the project has not been finalised. The resolution of the two ministers was that November 2021 should be the final date for completion of the project and that expenditure should be monitored to avoid injecting money on items not being completed. The delays have indeed cost the Department dearly, both financially and in terms of reputation because the project was meant to affirm a woman who endured the horrors of colonisation. The idea behind the Sarah Baartman Centre was to pay homage not only to her but to the Khoisan communities who have been waiting for the project to be completed. DSAC is working hard to deal with the process.
Dr Cynthia Khumalo DDG: Arts and Culture Promotion and Development, replied about the Ministerial advisory team. At the start of this year, it became evident that the COVID-19 challenge was continuing, there were dialogues initiated by the Freedom in which the Minister and the Department and the Sector Education and Training Authority (SETA) participated. At the last session there was a proposal to establish a task team to work with the Ministry to address the challenges raised by the Cultural and the Creative Sector practitioners. This gave rise to the Ministerial advisory team which has six members. Its objective is to deal with key issues through the work streams which were created. The work streams were in the areas of banking, landlord and school fees challenges experienced by the Creative Sector. There were engagements with the Department of Basic Education and the School Governing Body national structure exploring school fee exemption and other options for the Creative Sector who were unable to generate any income. The other area was that of retail and lastly the private and corporate sector. These work streams have been working diligently and have engaged with different stakeholders with the participation of that department. The six advisors were identified and nominated by industry itself and then the Minister made the appointments.
On the protection of the artists from the collection societies, Members will recall that this process is dealt with in the Copyright Amendment Bill and the Performers' Protection Amendment Bill. There are several discussions that have taken place giving political parties an opportunity to discuss the contents of the Bill and inform their positions. This is mainly what will create the enabling environment. DSAC is very closely monitoring the progress on this as led by the Portfolio Committee on Trade and Industry and Competition. However, the Department and the Committee has been participating through the various respective study groups. This legislation will go a long way towards creating the enabling environment of protecting the artists.
As mentioned in the previous meeting, sign language is not an official language. DSAC works closely with the Department of Justice to ensure that within this financial year, the inclusion of sign language as an official language is realised. The language bursary offering is specifically on the current official languages recognised in the Constitution.
The GBV campaigns are three pronged. One is the programme launched by the Minister in September 2020 called the Golekane Movement “It’s enough” “Sokwanele” campaign. It addresses GBV and specifically aims to achieve an influence on the public about this particular scourge. The second one is Abaqhawefazi or Women Heroes focusing on the challenges faced by women in society by raising awareness on the youth by using social media platforms. The last one does not solely focus on GBV but is encapsulated in the Silapha Wellness programme which was rolled out in February 2021. It gives an opportunity to artists and sports practitioners to receive counselling once all the information is available on different platforms in the roll out of programmes DSAC is doing in different provinces. The Minister has asked the Department to ensure integration within the programmes. These are the three programmes for creating GBV awareness in communities.
Dr Khumalo gave an update on the National Arts Council (NAC). To date, the NAC is sitting at a point where the first tranche payment to 1 307 beneficiary organisations and individuals has been paid out amounting to R208.2 million. At this stage, the NAC has started disbursing the second tranche payment which is dependent on the submission of a report on the first tranche that organisations and individuals have already received .There are now 132 organisations that have already submitted their first tranche reports which allows the NAC to start paying the final tranche payments to those organisations. The amount paid out to date stands at R3.9 million. This the current status of assisting artists that have made applications. It is outside other processes in DSAC that are continuing with investigations on mismanagement and other allegations that emerged during the last three months when there was a debacle around the NAC.
Dr Sakiwo Tyiso, Department of Arts and Culture Chief Director: Strategic Management and Planning, said looking at DAC's performance, it could be hard on itself as it achieved 15 of the 23 set targets However, there are an additional four targets projected to be achieved but with inadequate verification evidence [inaudible 16:48-16:58]. It is important to emphasise that without that verification source, it cannot be ascertained that it is achieved because DAC is getting ready for the audit process. The audit scrutinises the information given and if there is inadequate verification sources, the target will be declared as unachieved and the audit may raise questions on the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information tabled. The available information indicates that 19 targets have been achieved; it is just that four of the targets are indicated as unachieved as DAC does not have adequate verification sources.
DAC is reliant on evidence for performance. There is a Technical Indicator Description (TID) which is the basis of collecting that information. It has developed Standard Operation Procedures (SOP) for each indicator which allows for information collection. There is a tracking tool which indicates the evidence that is not available and the information will continue to be collected as DSAC moves to the next financial year. It will be projected in Quarter 4 how DAC has performed. The collection of performance information is still in process and that information will be presented to the Committee. To improve collection of information going forward, collection was normally done on a quarterly basis but now it will be monthly. DAC will now meet with provinces on a monthly basis. The pandemic has provide the opportunity to meet through Microsoft Teams virtual meetings which facilitate discussions on a regular basis. Monthly meetings for the collection of information is how it will be conducted going forward.
On the underperformance, where targets have not been achieved in a particular quarter, performance is speeded up in the subsequent quarters. In Quarter 4 DAC was able to speed up the collection of information that was outstanding. The Quarter 4 report will show those targets as achieved.
Ms Mandisa Tshikwatamba, DDG: Corporate Services, promised the Committee that vacancies are being addressed. In 2020/21 there was a slowdown in filling vacancies as recruitment is a national event done across provinces. Travelling was a challenge which affected recruitment. From August 2020 recruitment resumed and was speeded up. It started with 22 positions advertised and this was followed by another 32 positions in March 2021 and they are moving to the third phase around the end of June. She asked the Committee to be understanding as when positions are advertised, the Department finds itself overwhelmed by huge numbers of applications due to the level of unemployment in the country. This creates the delays raised by Members because every applicant has to be captured and go through the verification process of documents submitted. It is trying its best to reduce the recruitment process to four months, which is in line with the public sector standard. DSAC is trying to reduce the vacancy level to 5% again which a common standard in the public sector. It has a plan that it is monitoring very closely.
Mr Mkhize acknowledged the commendations from the Committee. On the choice of word by Mr Madlingozi about "embezzlement" of funds, there has not been any such case. DSAC will not respond to that until an investigation is done and completed to confirm if there was embezzlement. What can be clarified to the community is that there was an issue of overpromise and the contracts in question had to be revised. That triggered a lot of disgruntlement and the NAC board had to intervene saying it had to cut its cloth according to its size. That was the cause of consternation and anger even for people who had not yet been affected. Thus, there is no embezzlement of funds – that has been proven. The investigation is the pipeline and the position for a forensic expert has already advertised closing 30 June. The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) was approached to assist with the investigation, but it indicated it is outside its scope. However SIU promised to give advice and technical support to give credibility to the process. The NAC board is dealing with the matter and will establish if there was any embezzlement.
There is an assumption that the people who visited DSAC on 17 May had a petition. Based on their application, signed by the applicant by the name of The Deep of Indemnity, there was no indication of a petition. Therefore there was no one to meet them and receive the application. Sometimes there is misinformation but DSAC works on facts. However, he had personally called the leader of the organisation and asked her what should be expected and what were the grievances DSAC should address and the response was: "No, they were just visiting".
Follow up questions
Mr Madlingozi asked again about Ministry advisors. Are they doing background checks of the people who became Ministry advisors? The response given is that the industry came up with those candidates, what organisation is "the industry"? How far are the results of the oversight that the Committee did, not only on the NAC? How long are we going to wait for the way forward?
Ms Van Dyk asked if DSAC has a list of the academies that it funds? Can the list be made available to the Committee so Members can see the allocation per academy and their respective provinces? Sign language was interesting for her because it is one of the recognized languages by the Department of Basic Education and learners can do it as subject that is why it was relevant. Who has been appointed to do the investigation at the NAC? Can DSAC give us more information on that process? How does the government ensure that transformation is based on merit and not the colour of your skin?
Mr Mhlongo asked the DG why his office was closed when people were coming to visit. Do you think the EPG is working since the federations measure themselves? Can it help us to achieve transformation? Can it provide a good study to prove that it is working, not the CSA intervention story. He asked that the DG use a different federation to prove that it is working other CSA.
The Chairperson asked for elaboration on the R7.2 million for sanitisers, protective equipment and decontamination of buildings.
The Chairperson said she discovered in the Chairpersons' meeting that some Committees have legislative programmes from their departments for legislation in the pipeline. Do we have bills in the pipeline? The President is asking that the Amendment Bills for the protection of artists be fast tracked. Other Committees have asked to hold public hearings on legislation during recess. That information was communicated so that the political leaders could allow Committees to do so, but there is no legislative programme for this Committee. It is concerning. Can you say something because we are going into a very long recess? The House Chairperson wanted Committees to apply immediately to hold meetings during recess if there is legislation to complete. She was not happy that as a Committee with so much legislation to pass, the Department could not even table one Bill in Parliament.
Mr Mkhize replied that the Ministry did not have to do background checks as the individuals were coming from various sector organisations. They were appointed based on who they are in the sector.
On written responses to Committee oversight questions, he is aware that the Department has to provide reports including findings and recommendations so it gives an appropriate response. He gave the example of the alleged sexual harassment at PACOFS by an employee. The Department had used its own resources to assign Adv Mehlomakhulu to lead the engagement with the board and fast track the investigation. Subsequent to that, a letter was received from the attorneys, who indicated that unfortunately the board had engaged those attorneys. The matter had escalated from a complaint to a level where it has to be treated as a grievance. In his response, the DG attached a form for the complainant to complete to assist in the investigation process. That is how DSAC had been dealing with that matter. He suggested that DSAC revisits all the findings to be able to give the Committee a full response.
The list of the academies funded by DSAC will be shared with the Committee as requested.
On the NAC investigation, when the matter came to the attention of DSAC, there was the issue of possible complicity or involvement and conflict of interest by NAC board members. Therefore DSAC undertook to investigate because the board is implicated. As result, DSAC advertised for a forensic investigator. A legal opinion was solicited on the conflict of interest. Based on the outcome of the legal opinion, it was clear there was no conflict of interest. In fact, those people were not even there when the adjudication took place, they only assumed their board duties at a later stage and this was finalised under the former board. The Minister had to follow up with board to fast track the process, but that board had already ended its term so they got feedback from those who were submitting their proposals. Unfortunately, the quotes for a forensic investigation were all above R500 000 so it had to make it a tender process. This tender will be closing 3 June and then they will appoint a suitable company to do the forensic investigation.
On the closure of DSAC offices, the Department will continue to take necessary steps to prevent COVID-19. The office is not closed but the strategy to minimise infections is to prevent an influx of large numbers of people to their offices. Therefore, visits are by appointment. The group referred to had no intention of engaging with DSAC. This was confirmed by its leader when he called her.
The DG was disconnected due to loss of network.
Mr Vusithemba Ndima, DDG: Heritage Promotion and Preservation, replied about new legislation. DSAC has started the process of reviewing legislation that may need to be amended in line with the White Paper on Arts, Culture and Heritage. It has already started looking at which would require small amendments as well as those that will bring fundamental changes. DSAC has already commissioned [48:59-49:06]. That is already in place. The question is how do we look at it in the [49:08-49:10]. He asked colleagues to reply on the legislative programme for Parliament.
Dr Cynthia Khumalo replied that DSAC is finalising its roll out plan for legislation affected by the White Paper. The process is quite advanced, and hopefully it will be able to submit a roll out plan to the Executive Management Team (EMT) by the end of June. Thereafter, it will be in a position to advise the Committee on which pieces of legislation will be prioritised for this financial year.
Ms Sibongile Mondile, Acting CFO, replied about the budget spent on sanitisers and PPE. When DSAC did its budget reprioritisation, it only had R5m to reprioritise. The spending by 31 December 2021 was R2.7 million of the R5m, not R7.2m. It would not spend money it does not have.
The Chairperson pointed out that the meeting will be extended to accommodate another presentation and was eager to hear more about sanitisers and PPE which was important especially in relation to the poor.
Mr Mhlongo said his EPG question was not answered.
Ms Sumayya Khan replied that DSAC is trying to right the wrongs of the past, and it is not only a moral issue; transformation is looked at from a strategic perspective as well. When one looks at where it started with the Transformation Charter and the exercise for measuring the performance of federations, and where it is now, the gaps and challenges that affect transformation became visible and clear. Through the transformation reports, the gaps are discovered which gives the idea of what needs to be done. However, to achieve transformation is still a long process.
DSAC supports 60 federations on an annual basis through funding of R114 million. Even though the federations have their own resources, it is not possible to get to every corner of the country without sufficient resources. DSAC then looks at the areas identified in the transformation report. There were two very clear areas that it needs to be mindful of. One is the population dynamics of the country where the under 18 population is growing, the white population is diminishing and a lot of institutional knowledge capacity within the federations lie with the white population group. There is an effort to develop the population group that is growing in the end there will be no capacity in the federations because of the diminishing group. The area of school sport has been identified as requiring attention. School sports are developed to ensure greater participation of all schools in school sports activities because schools are nurseries for development. Talent is identified at school sports. Even though these areas have been identified, it is not optimal, but still a process. Federations are engaged on a one on one basis because each federation is unique. The Department is trying hard to get the federation agenda off the ground. There are 19 codes of sports that it is measuring. Hopefully, it will be increased in the next four years or so to ensure more codes are part of the measurement.
Mr Mkhize managed to re-join the meeting and promised that DSAC will provide the Committee with the critical legislative programme. He said because the EPG is based on scientific evidence, it helps in implementing the required interventions. The intention when the entity moved from quarters that everyone was complaining about was that the federations will embrace transformation. However, the carrot and stick had to apply in saying if there is failure to comply these will be likely consequences legally. It is a challenge but the EPG is working in identifying areas of intervention. He requested presenting the EPG report to the Committee to provide a sense of how it works. He asked if he could present the next presentation of the day which was the Update Report on Phase 3 of the Department COVID-19 Relief Fund.
The Chairperson agreed. She was not happy with the response given on the R7.2 million on sanitisers and PPE. She hoped to get more clarity.
Mr Mhlongo suggested the presentation is deferred as there was not enough time.
Ms Van Dyk agreed that the Committee will not be doing justice if it rushed the briefing.
The Chairperson apologised to DSAC for not being able to present its report on the COVID-19 funding because Members spent too much time on matters arising. She thanked the team for the presentation. She noted some outstanding issues were not clearly responded to. She asked DCAC to keep its promise to forward the outstanding information that was requested during meetings.
The Chairperson spoke about the Committee programme and proposed that the Committee continue with its work during the long recess.
Mr Seabi agreed they should have Committee meeting during recess because their Department is huge. He proposed that in the week of 20 or 27 July the Committee should have the briefing by DSAC on the repatriation policy and on the Phase 3 of DSAC COVID-19 Relief Fund.
The Chairperson noted some upcoming events. She thanked DSAC once again encouraged the spirit of servant leadership when executing duties.
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