Postponed: Unbundling of Postbank from SAPO: DCDT briefing

NCOP Public Enterprises and Communication

16 March 2022
Chairperson: Mr J Nyambi (ANC, Mpumalanga)
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Meeting Summary

The Committee was supposed to be briefed in a virtual meeting by the Department of Communications and Digital Technologies (DCDT) on the unbundling of Postbank from the South African Post Office. However, it agreed to reschedule the meeting because the Minister was not present owing to a miscommunication between the Committee and the Department.

A Member of the Committee pointed out that Members had continually raised the issue that it could not hold its meetings at the same time that Cabinet had its meetings.

Mr J Nyambi (ANC, Mpumalanga) was nominated and elected as Acting Chairperson until a permanent Chairperson for the Committee was elected. 

Meeting report

Election of Acting Chairperson

Ms Amanda Zindlani, Committee Secretary, said that the Committee needed to elect an Acting Chairperson.

Ms L Bebee (ANC, KZN) nominated Mr J Nyambi (ANC, Mpumalanga) for the role of Acting Chairperson.

Ms N Ndongeni (ANC, Eastern Cape) seconded the nomination of Mr Nyambi.

Mr M Nhanha (DA, Eastern Cape) wanted clarity on the rules of the Committee. He asked how long the rules allowed the Committee to have an Acting Chairperson, in the event the Chairperson of the Committee resigned. 

Ms Zindlani responded that the Members were allowed to determine if the Acting Chairperson would chair only this meeting, or going forward, until it received a permanent Chairperson.

Mr Nhanha said that Ms Bebee had not indicated if her nomination was for this meeting only, or permanently.

A Member of the Committee agreed with the nomination of Mr Nyambi and said that he must chair until a permanent Chairperson was elected.

It was then agreed that Mr Nyambi would be the Acting Chairperson of the Committee until a permanent Chairperson was elected.

The Acting Chairperson thanked and welcomed everyone that was present. He said a permanent Chairperson would be elected soon because the Committee dealt with very serious issues.

Rescheduling of meeting

The Acting Chairperson referred to the agenda and said that there had been a miscommunication between the Committee and the office of the Minister.

The Secretary of the Committee confirmed that the Department of Communications and Digital Technologies (DCDT) and the entities were present, but the Minister was not.

Acting Chairperson suggested that the Committee reschedule the meeting to allow the Minister to lead the entity in its presentation. It was important that the Minister was present because the meeting dealt with serious issues. He asked the Committee to comment on his proposal.

Ms T Modise (ANC, North West) said that the Committee was dealing with a complicated entity that faced many challenges. She agreed with the Chairperson that the meeting needed to be rescheduled.

Ms Bebee agreed with the comments made by Ms Modise because the entity faced a number of challenges. The entity needed to be led by the Minister and agreed that the meeting needed to be rescheduled.

Mr Nhanha said that he found the comments made by the Members hypocritical because he and Mr A Arnolds (EFF, Western Cape) had continually raised the same issue. The Committee continued to have a meeting schedule that clashed with the schedule of Cabinet. It made it difficult for the Committee to engage with entities without the Minister present. The issues being dealt with affected not only the Minister of Communications but also the Minister of Public Enterprises. He asked the Committee when last the Ministers had been present at a meeting held on a Wednesday. He said the Committee would encounter the same problem if it held a meeting on a Wednesday.

Acting Chairperson noted the comments made and said that the problem was a miscommunication between the Committee and the Minister regarding the meeting. He had not wanted to impose the suggestion to reschedule the meeting on the Committee, and that was why he had allowed the Members to comment on it. He did not want to blame any individual, but it would be in the best interests of every stakeholder present if the Minister was present. He would engage directly with her to determine when the Minister could attend the meeting to address the issues of the relevant stakeholders.

Mr Nhanha agreed with the Acting Chairperson and said that the Acting Chairperson needed to address the issue. The Committee was not obligated to meet only at 10am -- it could meet after the plenary because it was part of the work of the Committee.

The Acting Chairperson apologised to the different stakeholders for rescheduling the meeting and assured them that this miscommunication would not happen again.

Ms Nonkqubela Jordan-Dyani, Director-General (DG), DCDT, apologised on the behalf of the Ministry for not being present. The Minister could not attend because of Cabinet commitments and the Deputy Minister had a medical problem. She agreed with the comments made by Mr Nhanha, and asked the Committee to hold its meetings after the plenary in order for the Minister to attend. She highlighted that all the relevant entities were present.

The Acting Chairperson noted the comments made by the DG and said that the Committee would consider them when making a decision to hold its meetings.

Ms T Mamorobela (ANC, Limpopo) agreed with the comments made by the Acting Chairperson.

The Acting Chairperson thanked the different stakeholders for being present and excused them from the meeting.

Committee minutes

The minutes of 8 December 2021were adopted without any amendments.  

The meeting was adjourned. 


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