Repatriation & Restitution Policy of Human Remains & Heritage Objects; Covid-19 Relief Fund 3rd phase; with Minister

Sports, Arts and Culture

27 July 2021
Chairperson: Ms B Dlulane (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

Video: Portfolio Committee on Sport, Arts and Culture, 27 July 2021

The Department of Sport, Arts and Culture (DSAC) gave a briefing on the National Policy on Repatriation and Restitution of Human Remains and Heritage Objects which covers the remains of South Africans that lie outside the borders of South Africa, on the African continent or overseas, as well as inside South Africa. The policy was approved by Cabinet on 16 March 2021 and seeks to formalise the process of repatriation and restitution of human. Repatriation refers to the return of human remains back to South Africa. Restitution applies to people’s remains that were buried unjustly or not in their rightful burial place within the country. The Department emphasised that citizens need to understand that repatriation is an expensive and complex process. In some cases it is even impossible such as when infrastructure and human settlements have been erected making it impossible to exhume the remains. The financial implication of the Repatriation Policy has an estimated cost of R30.66 million but the Department assured the Committee it would approach National Treasury for a special fund.

Members asked about the timeline for policy implementation; from where the funding will come; reasons the South African government had failed to request the return of human parts that "barbaric" Western countries still held; how can the policy state that the cost for return of those human remains must be borne by the requesting when the remains were obtained unethically; if repatriation and restitution of human remains will be achieved with the limited funding and in accordance with the belief system of the families of the deceased; establishment of the Repatriation Office; the role of the South African Heritage Agency (SAHRA); and the consultation process for the Repatriation Policy.

The Department presented an update on the third phase of the Covid-19 relief fund for artists and athletes. For the Arts, 6332 individual applications were approved by adjudicators; 763 declined; and 121 referred back due to incomplete documentation; 4 were non-South Africans. As for payments, 5100 paid; 252 bank rejections – being followed up; 303 being processed for payment by the paying agencies. Total paid out is R51 million at R10 000 per beneficiary. For Arts organisations, 1103 applications were received with 1088 adjudicated; 15 being verified; 222 recommended; 33 referred back for outstanding documents; 833 were rejected. Further processing of payment to organisations subject to budget availability as indicated on the advert when the call went out. For Living Legends, there were 122 submissions for third phase relief. All efforts have been made to get documents from the 80 legends but now the process has been closed.

For Sport, 900 individual applications adjudicated; 25 were referred to the Arts section; 78 applications were approved and paid; 797 applications were declined. A total of R780 000 was paid to individual applicants. For Sport organisations, 153 applications adjudicated; 3 were referred to the Arts section; 119 were declined; 17 were duplicates; 11 individuals applied as organizations; and 3 were recommended.

Members asked for the total budget of the third phase Covid-19 Relief Fund and if the Department had to process any appeals; why the National Arts Council (NAC) was utilised to disburse payments when it was under forensic investigation and the amount allocated to it; costs for relief fund disbursement; and if the R10 000 relief fund payments were consistent across the board. There were some hot moments where some Members believed DSAC was not playing open cards with them.
 

Meeting report

Minister’s remarks
Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture, Nathi Mthethwa, commented on the repatriation and restitution of human remains and heritage objects to the country. This is about fulfilling the fundaments of the Constitution. We ought to recognise the injustices of the past and to honour those who suffered for justice and freedom in South Africa. This is about the suffering of Africans under the hands of the ex-colonialists. The Minister spoke about freedom fighters and about mortal remains that were taken for scientific purposes and other reasons. He referred to the white community and the false and pernicious ideology of racial superiority and the security attached to oppressing others.

The Repatriation and Restitution Policy had taken time due to consultations with sister countries on the continent who felt that our countrymen and women who perished on their soil belonged to them as well. We are talking about AZAPO, PAC, BCM and ANC freedom fighters who were taken in as fellow citizens by those countries. South Africa has links with those countries both from a Pan Africanism and political point of view. We just bid farewell to President Kenneth Kaunda and this is a man among others on the continent who felt that the people who perished on their soil have to remain there because they belong to them as well.

The second matter is an update on the relief funding by the Department to artists and athletes to ease their difficulties. This is the third phase and we did allude to the fact that it marks the end of the relief intervention.

The Minister remarked that we make no apology to honour those who suffered for this country during the liberation movement.

National Policy on the Repatriation and Restitution of Human Remains and Heritage Objects
Mr Vusumuzi Mkhize, DSAC Director-General, commented that the repatriation policy will give people some closure in making peace with the loss of loved ones during the fight against apartheid. This policy extends to repatriating heritage objects taken illegally from the country.

Mr Vusithemba Ndima, Deputy Director-General: Heritage Promotion and Preservation, said the policy had been presented to and approved by Cabinet already. The policy is an opportunity to bring the repatriation and restitution of the human remains of those who died during colonialism, apartheid and resistance within a coherent framework for the management of requests, claims and research by the national government as part of the healing and reconciliation of the communities and people of South Africa.

This policy covers the remains of South Africans that lie outside the borders of South Africa, on the African continent or overseas, as well as inside South Africa. They could be the remains of people who fell in the line of duty, in military action or in civil society struggles against apartheid. They could also be the human remains of people whose corpses were collected illegally or unethically, which found their way into the repositories of institutions in South Africa or overseas for the purpose of, for example, racial research. This policy also covers material culture, artefacts and documentation closely associated with human remains such as grave goods and bodily depictions.

Government has been undertaking repatriation and restitution on an ad hoc basis in the absence of national policy and guidelines. Government is unable practically to undertake and carry the costs of the numerous requests it receives for repatriation and restitution from the public and stakeholders.

Mr Ndima spoke to the implementation plan, financial implications, risk mitigation, implications for vulnerable groups, and the consultation process for the policy (see document).

Discussion
Mr B Madlingozi (EFF) asked how the policy would execute the guidelines when these were developed through a 1980 exhumation law of the previous South Africa government. He asked why the government had failed to ask for the return of human parts that the barbaric western countries still hold. How can the policy agree that the cost to return those human remains be borne by both the requesting state and the private institution when these objects were obtained unethically by the satanic western countries? He asked if DSAC believes this work will be done within the R30 million budget allocation.

Mr T Mhlongo (DA) asked when the special fund will be established and the turnaround time. The consultation processes has no inclusion of local and provincial governments – are they going to be included in the consultation process?

Mr Mhlongo said that we understand that we have to be sensitive to these matters but we must not do things for political reasons. This project must align with the beliefs of families of the deceased who will be repatriated. They must be included in the repatriation process of their loved ones.

Ms V Malomane (ANC) noted that there was a mention of local municipalities as a stakeholder. Does this mean there will be a role played by the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA)? She asked if the Repatriation and Restitution Office within the South African Heritage Resource Agency has been established yet? If not, when is it going to be established? Has an evaluation been conducted to ascertain if the budget will be adequate for this programme?

Mr M Zondi (ANC) welcomed the framework. It showed that the Minister and Department are implementing transformation. He appreciated the framework as the Minister touched on one of the most important things which are the negotiations on the ownership of the remains of the freedom fighters who perished outside the country. This was touching. At some point they had visited Mozambique and at the Matola Raid Monument, they were taken through where the freedom fighters stayed up until they were attacked. The Mozambican government told us that they did not want the remains to be taken because they were part of Maputo's heritage although they would not have a challenge if their families came and visited the graves. This is the case with many other countries in Africa.

Mr D Joseph (DA) asked about the funding risk and if there were international organisations that dealt with funding or support for this kind of international work. He asked if the Department of Public Works is not part of this process since it deals with state funerals and their the costs. He made reference to a non-profit organisation called Ifa Lethu, which was funded in the past – what role can this organisation play with this policy?

Mr C Sibisi (NFP) said that having criteria for the repatriation of people’s remains from other countries will be problematic because we are not certain if everyone will qualify for repatriation. Is it only going to be those who were politically affiliated that will receive preference and taking into account the shortage of funding as well?

Ms M Khawula (EFF) said that she was not happy that every time government speaks about doing things for its people, there is always a reference to apartheid. This government has been governing since 1994 and it must refrain from that and start serving its people in the way it should.

She asked about the stakeholders and the communities that were consulted. We often hear about consultation with communities yet we never see these consultations happening on the ground.

She agreed with Mr Sibisi that many of these benefits do not trickle down to the people on the ground. The ANC government just does its own thing for the people closest to it. The whole funding issue was simply theoretical because looting and misappropriation of funds has become a norm in this country.

Mr M Seabi (ANC) said that the presentation refers to an implementation plan in terms of years but it does not indicate which year will be the first year of implementation. There is also reference to collaborative work with countries outside the continent – how will the Department work with those countries in the repatriation process?

Department response
Mr Ndima replied that the presentation referred to the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property. This is international convention used in repatriating heritage objects and this case also human remains. This Convention is not South African but is international and it is used by all countries.

The Repatriation Office will be established with SAHRA and will be established by the end of this financial year. This policy was adopted by Cabinet towards the end of the 2020/21 financial year and no provisions have been made for the current financial year but we are looking at implementation from 2021/22. We still need to ask National Treasury to assist with funding.

We are not looking at full scale massive repatriation because this policy will be assisting government to process requests that are coming from families and communities. It will not be a massive repatriation process.

It is true that exhumation and repatriation has been problematic with many countries on the continent. These countries have always said that if you take people from where they fell, we will be removing those bonds of friendship with South Africa. However, we also had to listen to the demands of communities and families that have been coming to government for assistance to repatriate their family member remains back to this country.

The criteria that will be used are not looking at political affiliation. It is about people who were involved in colonial wars or any other wars that were not political in nature. This policy extends beyond political fighters and there have been requests from research institutes that have discovered South Africans who were in some museums across the world.

As for consultations, the Department conducted road shows and workshops with provinces. It went to the provinces to talk about this policy and there were comments that came from the people, which were integrated into the policy.

This policy responds to the beliefs of the families. It is important to negotiate with countries because countries also have their own laws. South Africa cannot simply repatriate remains without negotiating with the country from which the remains will be repatriated.

The Department aims to professionalise the Repatriation and Restitution Office and the team will constitute experts from various fields and professions. The Department will commence within the continent but it will also be guided by the requests from families and communities when going beyond the continent if necessary.

Mr Mkhize replied that it is indeed correct that it is the country of origin that bears the cost of repatriation. Therefore, the Department will work to ensure that there is a funding mechanism and a special fund is currently being considered as an option to return the remains and heritage objects to the country.

As for the inclusion of all levels of government, this was tackled in the consultation phase and all spheres of government are affected by this policy, including local government. The policy will be distributed as it is a South African policy. It will also be available on the Department’s website for everyone to access it.

The legacy of apartheid did not die in 1994 and it would be disingenuous for people to be misled that the ramifications and consequences of a brutal system and the colonisation that went on for 300 years things disappeared. Therefore, it is important we understand that a key issue in this department is heritage and heritage does not begin in 1994. It is important to provide context on the redress of the injustices of the past. There are people like Sarah Baartman, who was not a political activist but she was taken as a black woman around the world to be ridiculed and so on. It was important that her remains were brought back to the country. This had nothing to do with political affiliation and this policy intends to serve all South Africans.

Minister's response
The Minister noted that not everybody will be repatriated to South Africa for a number of reasons. One of the reasons is that a few years ago, the Eastern Cape province repatriated the spirit of Chief David Stuurman, who was the Khoi Chief, leader and freedom fighter. He had to be repatriated from Australia and the spot his remains were buried in was now a railway line. This made it impossible to bring back his mortal remains. There is a military camp of freedom fighters in Angola who were uMkhonto we Sizwe cadres. There were 300 of them but the practical situation in that space in Angola is a human settlement. When people hear the Department talk about this process, they must understand that it is complex and each case will be looked at on its own merit. In this interaction, Members must note one thing that South African heritage is claimed by others on the continent as theirs.

We have been approached by Members of Parliament who would have wanted to service their own constituencies and we do not look at political affiliations. People do not have to dig deep into their pockets in assisting young people on sport development and so on but if we are approached, we will follow up on those matters. The Department serves the entire public, not the ANC because the fiscus is of the nation not of the ANC. Members are welcomed to come before the Department about queries and the Department will assist.

Further questions
Ms Khawula said that in KwaZulu-Natal there were chiefs that were taken away by the colonial whites and hung to die in Pietermaritzburg. She was recently taken by the family of that chief to where that chief was buried and then taken.

The reason there are problems after problems in this country is because there are people whose spirits are not resting in peace. There are many people who still need to be given proper burial for their spirit to rest in peace. For us to progress and succeed, we need to resolve what our great-grandfathers and mothers are facing. Politics did not start now and we should not prioritise only people whose remains are in other countries but we must also prioritise those remains that were buried unjustly within the country.

Mr Mhlongo asked when the Department is going to establish the special fund. He appreciated the policy and it is indeed a good policy. However, many departments talk about consultation without consulting the people on the ground.

Mr Ndima replied that the budgeting process is starting this month and the Department will present to Treasury a special plea for the funding. It is important that Members understand that this policy deals with repatriation and restitution of human remains – the restitution part applies to people’s remains that were buried unjustly or not in their rightful burial place within the country.

The Chairperson thanked the Minister and his team for the responses and said that the Committee would need to monitor this policy and would require updates from the Department.

Third phase of Department’s Covid-19 Relief Fund
Dr Cynthia Khumalo, DSAC DDG: Arts and Culture Promotion and Development, gave an update on the Covid-19 relief fund for artists and athletes which process has now concluded. The Department will be compiling its final report on this and ensure that it is made available to the Committee.

Summary of Arts
• Total overview of applications for Arts as of 22 July 2021:
A total of 7446 individual applications received
A total of 1167 applications were duplicates; as of 2nd July 2021 (not included above)
A total of 7220 individual applications adjudicated
A total of 6332 were approved by adjudicators
A total of 763 applications were declined
A total of 121 were referred back due to incomplete documentation
A total of 4 were non-South Africans

As for payments:
A total of 5100 applications were successfully paid
Total amount paid out to beneficiaries is R51 million at R10 000 per beneficiary
A total of 252 bank rejections – being followed up
A total of 303 being processed for payment by designated paying agencies (such as NAC)

• Arts organisations’ applications:
A total of 1103 applications from Organisations were received
A total of 1088 applications adjudicated
A total of 15 Applications are being verified
A total of 222 applications were recommended
A total of 33 applications were referred for outstanding documents
A total of 833 applications were rejected

Processing of payment to organisations will be subject to budget availability as indicated in the advert when the call went out.

• Living Legends, the total living legends submitted for third phase relief to date was 122. All efforts have been made to get documents from the 80 legends but now the process has been closed.

Summary of Sport
• Individual applications:
A total of 1085 individual applications received
A total of 185 applications were duplicates
A total of 900 individual applications adjudicated
A total of 25 applications were referred to the arts section.
A total of 78 applications were approved and paid
A total of 797 applications were declined
Total of R780 000 paid to individual applicants

• Organisations’ applications:
A total of 153 individual applications adjudicated
A total of 119 declined
A total of 3 applications were referred to the arts section
A total of 17 applications were duplicates
A total of 11 individuals applied as organizations
A total of 3 applications were recommended

Mr Mkhize said that for organisations, the Department will be guided by the budget because there was a high number of applications coming from individuals and many of them qualified.

Discussion
Mr Mhlongo welcomed the briefing and asked for the total budget for the third phase of Covid-19 relief and if the Department had to process any appeals. There were 763 individual artist applications declined. What was that based on? Were there appeals from the declined applications? He expressed his disappointment for the Department utilising NAC and asked the reason for this. Secondly, how much was allocated to NAC?

Mr Madlingozi said that the sector is not regulated properly. Government adopted a White Paper in October 2018 and this was endorsed by Parliament in 2019. We have not seen anything about this White Paper and the Department has not done anything differently in this sector since the adoption of that White Paper. The truth must be told that there was mismanagement of funds during the first and second phase but now the Department can talk about not having funds. Meanwhile, artists and athletes have been depressed because of the struggles that have come with Covid-19. It has been two years since the Department destroyed this sector. He asked about the Usiba money and the Creative and Cultural Industries Federation of South Africa (CCFISA) – it has been receiving money from the Department. CCFISA is being shoved down the throats of artists by the Department; why is that the case? We have been requesting the financial statements of CCFISA but to no avail.

It looks like the Department is spending a lot of money to pay people to distribute money to the living legends; why is the Department spending money to distribute money to the living legends? Lastly, why do we have too many people in the South African Olympic Team?

Mr Seabi asked if the second and third phase relief were part of the R150 million that was budgeted for. If so, how much was available for distribution? The report says that the Department was paying R10 000 per person in the Arts sector – how much was paid per organisation and per living legend? The same questions apply to the Sport sector and when can we expect the closing-out report? It would be helpful if Members were reminded of the objectives of the Relief Fund.

Ms V Van Dyk (DA) asked about the bank rejections and how that issue will be resolved. She asked why so many applications were declined in the Arts sector – was it all for administrative reasons or was it due to the budget? She asked if the living legends received the same R10 000 per person? Why is it that males seemed to have received more funding support in comparison to females?

Department response
Dr Cynthia Khumalo replied that the total relief budget for all phases after reprioritisation was R150 million. The Department then went from one relief fund intervention to another one using that same pot of funds utilising the remaining balance. We looked at how much had been spent and got a full report on that. Going into the third phase, the remaining balance was R70 million, a specific figure will be provided in the final report. This figure was made up of the balances of the work done in the first and second phase through the Department’s agencies such as Business and Arts South Africa (BASA), NAC and others which were making the payments on its behalf.

In the third phase, the process followed was that DSAC would do the administrative part and oversee the adjudication process and verification. The verification batches would be submitted to BASA and NAC that did the payments. DSAC required a letter of assurance as well as Treasury to ensure that the payments would be done. When the budget allocated to BASA was exhausted, the process shifted to NAC – the balance of the payments were now being made by the NAC. As of today, NAC has paid R33.77 million and BASA has paid R20.23 million, which brings it to a total of R54 million paid so far in R10 000 tranches.

From the inception of the Covid-19 Relief Fund, NAC was given R20 million for first phase, R10 million for second phase and R29.3 million for the third phase, totalling R59.3 million. Of this R59.3 million, the administrative costs for the first top third phase payments amounted to R1 million. The remaining balance went to the beneficiaries.

Mr Mhlongo interjected on a point of order and asked why these figures were never presented in detail to the Committee. These figures were now presented much later but not even in detail and he suspected ‘something fishy’.

Dr Khumalo replied that the entities were given authority in writing to consolidate the outstanding amounts from all the phases so that the remaining monies can be disbursed again. As for appeals, now that the process was being concluded, DSAC will focus on the appeals and the rejections. The numbers will be presented to the Committee.

DSAC has done a lot on the White Paper; it has a status update in the areas it is focusing on in implementing the White Paper. The implementation plan has been broken down to short-, medium- and long-term interventions. In the 2021/22 financial year, we have commenced with the implementation of the White Paper according to those categories.

She noted there was a request to provide the names of the living legends and their full details. All individual applicants were paid the same amount, which was R10 000 and this applied to the living legends, sports and artists individual applicants.

The final report will be concluded in about two weeks' time because this week DSAC was still processing some of the payments. The final report will be consolidated with the reports of the two agencies making the payments on behalf of DSAC.

On bank rejections, this was being resolved. DSAC has a team that accesses individual applicants to communicate with them about this. In some cases, DSAC will explore other modes of communication beside the indicated preferred mode of communication by the applicant if there is no response. Some applicants respond and other do not respond at all or respond after a long while. We are not closing the process yet to ensure that all those qualifying do get their money.

Our criteria that went out with the advert were very specific and the main objective of the relief was to provide a certain level of relief directly to the creatives. In the process of doing that we recognised that there were organisations that were struggling. However, there were other avenues made available by government for those organisations to receive some sort of relief.

Mr Mkhize added that there is no funding called the Usiba Fund. The Usiba Awards were ministerial awards to recognise and reward the creatives for their work in various categories. There is a full report on these awards and the people who benefited.

We need to be mindful of what the country has had to face since March 2020 after the adoption of the White Paper by Parliament in November 2019. DSAC could not perform any work on implementation of the White Paper as the country was on stand-still for almost six months. When the opportunity arose to roll out the White Paper objectives, the process has been undertaken but there are objectives that require legislative amendments, which would take a long time. With that said, we must admit that the sector is not as organised as it should be. To rectify this, the Copyright Amendment Bill and Performers’ Protection Amendment Bill had been introduced and passed. However, we know there have been challenges with concerns of the Bills not meeting constitutional muster. The Bills were referred back to Parliament and the process will commence on 4 August. These Bills will assist the welfare of creatives via regulation for that to happen we need the Bills to be passed. Once these Bills has been concluded and signed, the sector will be regulated.

The budget of the Covid-19 Relief Fund was looked at and the determination of R10 000 was deemed to be sufficient and through that amount we have been able to reach more people. When we looked at assisting creatives and sportspeople, the decision was to make efforts to provide them with support by contacting them and requesting outstanding documents or information. Hence, appeals were not prevalent because DSAC took all necessary steps to ensure that those who were rejected due to incorrect, incomplete or missing documentation were contacted. Those rejected were those who could not be reached through exhaustive efforts to reach them to provide sufficient information for the processing of their applications.

Minister Mthethwa encouraged Parliament to fast track the processing of the two fundamental bills, the Copyright and the Performers’ Protection Amendment Bills, for transformation of the sector. These bills were now with Parliament and they seek to address challenges that have been crippling the sector. He said the process is ongoing to implement the White Paper and it will work effectively with the passing of the Copyright and Performers’ Protection Amendment Bills.

Further questions
Mr Mhlongo said that DSAC has failed to support artists, creatives and sportspeople in the sector. We should not shy away from this truth or dilute it - It is a fact. Why is DSAC not providing full information about the funding? DSAC is not playing open cards with Members. Up to now, we have not received full information on the funding issues at National Arts Council. This lack of information makes it difficult for the Committee to conduct its oversight work effectively.

Mr Madlingozi said that more than 700 artists have been seeking assistance from DSAC to ensure that the sector was regulated since 2007.

Mr Madlingozi remarked that the current SA Olympic Team is not reflective of the demographics of South Africa. It is completely and utterly white – it does not represent the diversity of South Africa at all.

Mr Seabi said that it would be difficult under the current circumstances to satisfy each and every aspect as we are operating under difficult economic conditions. We can acknowledge what DSAC has done so far but now it needs to do more. However, it is difficult to do more with the few resources. Where there is a mismanagement of funds, heads must roll. The Minister has made this commitment to the country.

We must understand that we are operating under difficult economic conditions. R10 000 is not enough but it is something that DSAC could do with the few resources that were available. It may not be possible for DSAC to intervene to the extent that they pay the bonds and debt obligations of artists. We call on the Department as well as the Committee to see how best we can assist in soliciting more funds and resources for artists. R150 million is a drop in the ocean to assist the plight of artists.

The Chairperson said that the Committee is aware of the constrained resources when the Annual Budget was presented. Many Members understand the budget cuts are due to limited resources in the fiscus. The Repatriation Policy is good on paper. Members have reflected that less money was received by artists than expected but some entities have mismanaged the money. Reports on this are requested by Treasury

Ms Malomane said that through all the relief funding phases, the Committee asked DSAC about the learning curve as this was the first time this has happened in South Africa. DSAC has surely improved on the disbursement during the third phase. We can admit that there may have been challenges but improvement has happened. We need to assist the Department; it is not fair to say that DSAC has not done anything. This is untrue as DSAC had requested Members to contact it if there are any in their constituency that require assistance or to voice any concerns in Members' constituencies. Members do not have to wait for the Department to come to the Committee to voice their frustrations.

Department response
Mr Mkhize replied emphatically to the accusation that the Department was not playing open cards, saying that it did not come before the Committee to hoard information. The report was presented and Members have access to it. DSAC has provided additional information where it is required by the Committee. DSAC has not been evasive about any information. If Members feel that they are not satisfied with the requested information, they need to indicate this and all the information requested will be provided.

As for NAC, this is an entity of this Department directly responsible for the disbursement of funds to provide support to creatives – it has experience of doing this work. When we engaged with Treasury, we were asked which entities we were going to use and both the NAC and the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) were identified. DSAC continues to utilise its own entities instead of utilising consultants or service providers. These DSAC entities have a mandate to disburse funds on behalf of the Department to the creative sector. As for the status of the investigations, a forensic service firm has been appointed to deal with the concerns that arose around the Presidential Employment Stimulus Programme (PESP) not about the relief programme.

Minister's response
The Minister said that Mr Madlingozi was one of the artists who were present in the meeting for the establishment of CCIFSA and it was a collective effort by both the sector and government. This meant that the sector had to make CCIFSA work – not government because government does not create coordination structures for individual sectors. This was the duty of the creatives to organise themselves after the request of the former President that they should organise themselves in order to have their concerns addressed in a coordinated fashion. What the Department is accused of is providing support for this sector to have one voice. It is still the Department’s call for the sector to have CCIFSA as a structure that allows creatives to be organised. The Department does engage with the sector but CCIFSA is the duty of the sector. Sport is organised through SASCOC and the Department would assist the creatives to organise themselves. We have a tendency of reducing the entire sector to only the creatives but the Department’s mandate is beyond just the creatives.

The Minister said that government never created CCFISA but government facilitated, not only for individuals but for everyone. There is no government which created CCFISA. On the Department's efforts to assist the sector, perhaps to some Members of Parliament R10 000 is nothing but to people who have been struggling in the sector it may be something. The Department has sought to look at other non-financial efforts for the creatives and athletes and one of such is the SILAPHA wellness intervention programme. This programme was launched in February and it is currently being rolled out. Through this programme the Department has engaged the banks, landlords and dealt with issues with their children’s school fees, until something of substantive comes out of it.

As for the Olympic Team, the Department is for transformation, which is sacrosanct to this Department. Transformation exists in quite a number of sporting codes in the country, including cricket.

It is not true that there is hidden information by the Department. It came before the Committee to report on the third phase of the relief fund not to report on the NAC, which by the way did come before the Committee a few weeks ago. There is an ongoing NAC forensic investigation and he has interacted with NAC to see how far the process is and it has committed that by the end of next month the report will be submitted.

The Chairperson thanked the Department and indicated that due to time constraints, any other questions that may not have been answered or additional information required by Members, will be provided in writing by the Department.

Committee business
The Committee minutes dated 1 and 22 June and 6 July 2021 were adopted without substantive amendments. The Committee programme for the third term was considered and adopted.

The meeting was adjourned.

 

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