The Portfolio Committee met virtually to elect its Chairperson. Ms F Muthambi and Mr Bryant were nominated for the position. After the matter went to vote, Ms Muthambi was elected as the new Chairperson.
The newly-elected Chairperson said the Committee had much work to get through and proposed additional weekly meetings on a Friday to ensure the workload was processed. She said documents must be sent to Members at least 48 hours before the meeting. She said she was a fair Chairperson and looked forward to consulting with all the parties represented on the Committee. She highlighted there is no way the Committee will be able to conduct robust oversight discussion if they squeeze up to five briefings in one meeting
Election of a Chairperson
The Secretary of the Committee, Ms Tyhileka Madubela, welcomed everyone to the meeting and said that she will be facilitating the process of electing a new Chairperson. She said that the outgoing Chairperson, Mr F Xasa (ANC), was deployed to chair the Portfolio Committee on Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs.
She quoted National Assembly rule 158 - A Committee must elect one of its Members as the Chairperson of the Committee.
Ms Madubela called for nominations.
Mr P Modise (ANC) moved to adopt the agenda. He further nominated Ms Faith Muthambi (ANC) to be Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee for Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment.
Ms N Gantsho (ANC) seconded the adoption of the agenda and also seconded the nomination of Ms Muthambi.
Ms Muthambi accepted the nomination.
The Secretary called for any further nominations.
Ms C Phillips (DA) nominated Mr D Bryant (DA) as the Chair.
Ms A Weber (DA) seconded the nomination.
Mr D Bryant accepted the nomination.
The decision went to a vote by show of hands – five Members voted for Ms Muthambi while three voted for Mr Bryant.
Ms Muthambi was elected as the new Chairperson of the Committee.
The Chairperson said she appreciated the democratic process and she accepted the new responsibility. She said she will continue with the work that was started by her predecessor. She said the Committee must rest assured that “I am a very fair Chairperson.”
Mr Bryant congratulated Ms Muthambi and said that she will have the support of the Democratic Alliance in conducting fair and objective meetings.
Mr N Paulsen (EFF) sang “You gotta have faith”.
Mr Modise welcomed Ms Muthambi on behalf of the ANC and agreed with EFF, that indeed you gotta have faith. He said he was happy to be led by a female Chairperson.
The Chairperson said she sometimes conducts consultative meetings with Members of other parties on matters of mutual interest. She said she is aware that Mr Paulsen is a leader from the EFF on this Committee and she asked Members from DA to come forth with their leader.
Mr Bryant said he is the designated leader of the DA on this Portfolio Committee.
Mr N Capa (ANC) congratulated Ms Muthambi and declared that this is how Women’s Month is concluded.
The Chairperson said that the programme of this Committee is very loaded. The Committee needs to consider spreading meetings over two days during the week as congested programmes do not allow for proper oversight. She said she also needs to catch up on some of the work of the Committee and the progress made. She said she believed in dynamic teams and she is looking forward to engaging with everyone.
Mr Bryant said there is a considerable amount of work that the Committee needs to get through. He suggested extending the current meeting by a few minutes to discuss.
The Chairperson suggested another day be arranged to exhaust the programme originally scheduled for today.
Ms S Mbatha (ANC) said that she is happy that the Portfolio Committee has elected a female Chairperson on the last day of Women’s Month. She said she hopes that Ms Muthambi will bring her legal expertise to this Portfolio.
The Chairperson proposed meeting on Friday to make up for the briefing scheduled for today. She said the Committee needs to review its mid-year term performance in line with baseline documents and strategic plans. She highlighted there is no way the Committee will be able to conduct robust oversight discussion if they squeeze up to five briefings in one meeting. She stressed that documents need to be sent to Members at least 48 hours before the meeting.
The meeting was adjourned.
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