Public Administration Laws General Amendment Bill: public hearings; Bill deemed undesirable

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Meeting Summary

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The Committee held public hearings on the Public Administration Laws General Amendment Bill, a Private Member's Bill proposed on 8 June 2022 by Dr L Schreiber (DA). The submissions mostly agreed with the Bill, and elaborated on its importance in enhancing the public service. Emphasis was placed on cadre employment being the main downfall of the public service, and the lack of meritocratic appointments was of key concern. A model based on the National Development Plan was suggested as a gradual, deep reformation of the public service. Presenters advocated for the Public Service Commission to gain independence and powers as a necessary first step.

Members said the main issue with the proposed Bill was that it duplicated current legislation. The true nature of cadre deployment was debated, but no consensus was reached, as some Committee Members considered cadre deployment to be perfectly legal and non-damaging.

The Committee rejected the Bill as undesirable, fundamentally based on the fact that it was a duplicate.

Meeting report

The Chairperson said that on 8 June, the Committee had received a presentation from Dr L Schreiber (DA) on his Public Administration Laws General Amendment Bill. Further submissions had also been received from the Presidency, the Socio-Economic Impact Assessment System (SEIAS) Unit, the Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA) and the Public Service Commission (PSC). As part of the public participation process, stakeholders who had shown interest in the Bill were invited. They would provide feedback and valuable insight. Committee Members would be given opportunities to ask questions to the presenters. Thereafter, careful determinations would be made on the desirability of the Bill.

Committee minutes

Committee minutes dated 8 June 2022 were adopted with a minor amendment.

Public Administration Laws General Amendment Bill: Public Submissions

SA Institute of Race Relations

Mr Terence Corrigan, Project Manager, South African Institute of Race Relations (SAIRR), said the South African state was widely thought of as enabling corruption, undermining the country's development, and harming prospects for a private sector. The government tended to appoint people based on inappropriate political reasons. People should be appointed based on merit. An effective public service was one that was performance incentivised, skilled, ethical, disciplined, non-partisan and career-oriented.

The Bill would promote merit-based employment and resist political intrusion. The Bill stood to benefit South Africa, and the IRR urged its passage.

See submission for further details

Public Affairs Research Institute

Mr Ryan Brunette, Research Associate, Public Affairs Research Institute (PARI), emphasised that PARI was against using public service reform to gain political advantage over one's competition. There were influential groups in major parties who were opposed to one another but shared and recognised the same problems spoken about today.

The Constitution and implementing statute required that personnel practices be based broadly on criteria of ability and representivity. Political criteria were excluded, except in the case of s12A of the Constitution. Political criteria were legally excluded from entering personnel decisions, but the Public Service Act continued giving political office-bearers largely unchecked powers of appointment and removal. PARI's empirical research on this topic showed that political criteria enter personnel decisions pervasively.

The Bill included a number of useful interventions. PARI's analysis suggested a model insulating public administration from inappropriate political interference by empowering the Public Service Commission (PSC). Reform was suggested for the lower levels across the public service, and for removals. The model was a hybrid one, which sought to optimise the imperatives of political control, administrative integrity, and process efficiency and flexibility.

See submission for further details

Law School on cadre deployment

Dr Erwin Schwella, founding Dean of the School of Social Innovation at Hugenote Kollege, referred to his considerable experience in matters of cadre deployment. He said public administration should represent the South African people, based on ability, objectivity, fairness and the need to rectify past imbalances. Cadre deployment destroyed this representivity. The public administration was thus full of loyal cadres from political groups. This went against the Constitution.

The amendment legislated what was already in law and in fact required, which was to reinforce constitutionality, legality and legitimacy in matters related to a professional public service. This amendment should therefore be passed, legislated and implemented as a necessary but insufficient step in saving South Africa from the slippery slope of destruction it was currently on.

See submission for further details

Institute for Global Dialogue

Dr Philani Mthembu, Executive Director: Institute for Global Dialogue, said there was a growing consensus across party lines on the need for a professional public service, but it was important that this be translated into meaningful action. A professional public service was fundamental to positioning the country favourably in a changing international landscape.

Effective, accountable and inclusive institutions were essential to achieving the country's sustainable development goals (SDGs). All efforts to strengthen South Africa's public administration should thus be seen in this context, as they ultimately enhanced SA's own efforts to realise the aims of its Constitutional order, supported by the Bill of Rights, which enshrine the right to development. They would also ensure that South Africa was better able to contribute to the provision of global public goods and meet its international obligations through the SDGs.

See submission for further details

Discussion

Ms T Mgweba (ANC) asked Mr Corrigan to elaborate on a page in his presentation which stated that "depoliticisation was necessary for professionalisation and was necessary for capacitation." She asked what type of interventions the IRR would suggest combating challenges in the public service.

Addressing Mr Brunette, she noted that the PSC was mandated to investigate, monitor and evaluate personnel practices. The PSC did not play a role in recruitment, as it would undermine the work of the departments. If the PSC were to be involved in merit-based appointments, what would its role be?

She asked Dr Schwella to speak about what must be improved to ensure the public service was not factionalised, and how to deal with cadre deployment. What needed to be improved to prevent roads from falling into disrepair?

Ms S Maneli (ANC) referred to a section in Dr Schwella's presentation where he had noted that the Bill legislates what was already part of the law, and asked what he meant by this. What were the existing gaps in the public service legislation regarding professionalism in the public sector?

She asked Mr Corrigan for the IRR's view on comparing amendments by the DPSA and PSC on the Bill. Next, she referred to Mr Brunette's point of giving more power to the PSC to play a more centralised and meaningful role in the recruitment process of senior managers: She asked how centralised vs de-centralised recruitment processes would impact the public administration.

Ms C Motsepe (EFF) said since the Bill was legislated and its amendment was needed, how certain were the presenters that the new amendment would constitute the Bill or make changes? What were the problems with the current Bill? Which missing clauses must be amended that would work effectively? Should the Public Service Amendment Act be aligned with the Public Finance Management Amendment Act (PFMA) by granting the responsibility of administration to the heads of departments? Had they considered the legal amendments of the Public Service Act, the Public Administration Management Act, the Public Service Commission Act and the National Implementation Framework towards the professionalisation of the public service? If those amendments were considered, what was their view on addressing the gaps in public administration and repealing the Public Service Commission Act?

Mr C Sibisi (NFP) was concerned about the issues raised by the presenters. He referred to a scenario in the Department of Basic Education (DBE), saying that lower levels in school-based and district posts' promotions were rife with political interference. Were the presenters thinking about what happens at lower levels within departments? He commented that teachers would be given a principal's post without any prior experience, or as a deputy or head of department. This type of interference caused schools to be dysfunctional. Finally, he asked if the Bill would be practical at the lower levels, particularly with provincial departments and municipalities.

Dr M Gondwe (DA) addressed the model in Mr Brunette's presentation. She said the model of cadre deployment was based on the analysis in the National Development Plan (NDP). However, the government had admitted to being unable to achieve the NDP goals. The NDP recommended that the Public Service Commission be repurposed and repositioned as the guardian of meritocracy in the public service. However, South Africa was 11 years into the NDP, and no repurposing or repositioning had occurred. She asked Mr Brunette if it concerned him that the model was based on goals in the NDP that the country could not possibly achieve.

The Chairperson interjected that the Bill was being tabled by Dr Schreiber, and since his hand was raised he could not deny him speaking rights. The Committee should be asking Dr Schreiber questions, not the other way around.

Dr Schreiber said that he had questions, and began speaking.

The Chairperson interrupted, and asked if the presentations were in favour of his views.

Dr Schreiber confirmed, and politely continued his questions.

The Chairperson interrupted once more, saying that he was not supposed to give Dr Schreiber the platform even though he had.

Dr Schreiber said if it was a problem, he would be happy to abide by the Chairperson's ruling.

The Chairperson maintained that the Committee should ask Dr Schreiber questions on what he had proposed. Dr Schreiber should not question meeting attendees.

Dr Schreiber clarified that he had requested to ask the presenters questions. He agreed to abide by the Chair's ruling.

The Chairperson maintained that the presentations supported Dr Schreiber's proposals.

Dr Schreiber asked if the Chairperson preferred he not ask questions.

The Chairperson confirmed, and Dr Schreiber withdrew.

Ms M Ntuli (ANC) said she was pleased to see that there were institutions interested in what the Committee was doing. She thanked the presenters, and added that Ms Mgweba covered most of her questions. Ms Ntuli asked Mr Schwella to define cadre deployment, because she believed there was confusion surrounding the topic.

The Chairperson said that the proposal to amend the Bill and the presentations lacked clarity. No one had stated what was missing from the current legislation, or made suggestions to address the anomalies. He requested clarity from the presenters and Dr Schreiber.

Ms Mgweba asked the Chairperson if the Committee should deliberate on Dr Schreiber's presentation before the meeting continued, or after the presenters were given a chance to respond to questions.

The Chairperson requested responses from the presenters.

Responses

SAIRR

Mr Corrigan responded to the question on "depoliticisation was necessary for professionalisation and was necessary for capacitation". He described the statement as an ideal in the structure of incentivised behaviour. If politics played a role in daily operations, employment and career mobility, it would affect the career strategies of ambitious public servants -- no offence intended. If there was an overwhelming outside political influence, then one would feel that the public service was loyal to the state or internal culture. This image drove employees to impart skills. If the structure of the public service valued professional skills and competence, there was an incentive to learn those skills.

On the IRR's suggestions to combat challenges in the public service, he said the Institute would suggest removing obvious dangers like putting mechanisms in place to clarify political-administrative relationships or personnel appointments based on skills. The IRR subscribed to the idea of a National Qualifications Framework (NQF) entrance exam for positions. On comparing the amendments proposed by the IRR with the Bill, he asserted that those amendments should be studied once they had been tabled.

Responding to the Chairperson's request for clarification, he said nothing was particularly missing in the Bill. Certain practices made their way into governance, and the amendment was about drawing a line so those practices would no longer be entertained. Disincentives must be introduced to respond to excessive political interference.

Mr Corrigan commented on the question of schools and teacher unions being used for patronage purposes. He asserted that it was a picture-perfect example of why the country desperately needed professionalisation. Education was not only about good teachers, but also good management. If management positions were being filled by the wrong individual, there was a ripple effect that harmed the people who were most dependent on those services.

Public Affairs Research Institute

Mr Brunette began by clarifying that he had not been invited to the meeting to support the Bill. He did not support the Bill, because it "does not come from a promising direction," and it did not go far enough in terms of policy. He said he was there to speak to the Bill.

He addressed the concern of the PSC undermining the department if it engaged in recruitment. He said that historically the Civil Service Commission regulated personnel practices from a distance, and was actively involved in appointments and dismissals. Giving the PSC additional power was possible within the South African Constitution, and it was the best strategy for resolving problems of corruption and deterioration of state functions.

He responded to Ms Maneli by apologising if he did not fully understand the question. He assumed she had asked him for his view on the amendment bill, and proceeded. He said it contained some useful interventions and smart drafting. Speaking to his previous point on the matter, he maintained that the Bill did not go far enough to balance the discretion of politicians in appointment processes.

On Ms Gondwe's question about concern for the proposed model being based on the NDP, he conceded that it had been around for a long time and progress was slower than one would desire. He was not worried, because the public service reforms in question were part of an enormous structure that affected the lives of hundreds of thousands of people. Citing historical examples such as the United States, he said these reforms were expected to take decades. Eleven years would be a very short term for implementing these interventions, and he was not worried about the lack of achievement within the time frame.

Responding to the Chair's request for clarity, he said the Public Service Act and Public Service Commission Act needed an amendment to keep appointments and removals of personnel free of political influence and corruption. He said the PSC should be given a more extensive role in checking and balancing appointments and removals.

Hugenote Kollege Submission

Dr Schwella said there was a need for action to be taken against personnel appointments based on anything other than merit. He provided a definition for cadre deployment: 'Economic patronage dispensed to individuals in an appointment process not based on merit, but because they enjoy some party-political connection to the governing party.' He elaborated that cadre deployment in the format of employment or promotional decisions, bypassed merit and enhanced corruption. It created patronage based upon loyalty, not merit, and corrupted the decision-making processes. More so, it was an appointment based on reciprocity -- the employer/appointer expected something in return, and one could not serve the public without conflicting his\her discretionary powers. Not only was cadre deployment defined as a form of preferential treatment based on political connection, it was also destructive to fulfilling the constitutional mandates in public administration.

There was an argument favouring deeply reforming the public service and administration. It was necessary, but as Mr Brunette had stated, it would take a long time. Such a deep reformation would encourage people to use its difficulty level as an excuse to avoid working, and this would delay action. The idea of reformation was useful if it was paired with sustained, prolonged action across the entire value chain. He was in favour of the Bill, and was not instructed to say so. He cited the Zondo Commission's works on cadre deployment and its consequences. He mentioned the myriad offences defined by the PFMA and many Acts, and said, "maybe because our system was so weakened by people who were appointed based on loyalty rather than on merit, there were no consequences." He urged the Committee to start with the consequences by fully supporting the Bill and continuing the path of public administrative transformation.

Institute for Global Dialogue

Dr Mthembu said the research conducted at the Institute for Global Dialogue tried to locate South Africa in terms of a changing international landscape. He said the Constitution bound South Africans, as the majority of South Africans believed in it and its aspirations. Another element that should bind South Africans was the type of civil service provided to the population. He referred to the growing consensus, across all political parties, to professionalise the administration. He mentioned various public services worldwide and in history, particularly ancient China, where the Chinese Emperor needed to professionalise the civil service as the territory was too large to govern by himself. South Africans should be bound together in an increasingly competitive political environment to find a consensus on the type of civil service the country needs.

He concluded that any efforts to enhance and clarify the service and roles of institutions, were in South Africa's best interests. A strong civil service would strengthen South Africa's international presence.

Discussion

Ms Mgweba referred to the Bill presented at the previous Committee meeting by Dr L Schreiber (DA), and said. that the professionalisation of the public service was part of the agenda and was necessary. The National Development Plan (NDP) stated that the Public Service Commission (PSC) should be strengthened as an advisory and oversight role. This included ensuring standards and promoting values of the public service and investigating breaches of procedure. She noted that the proposed Bill states the PSC would be responsible for recruitment in the public service, but the NDP states that giving the PSC a direct role in recruitment would be counterproductive. The over-centralised nature of the recruitment system would make it difficult for departments to recruit their staff, whilst undermining the ability of department heads to formulate strategy for the department.

She asserted that the clauses stated in the NDP should be adhered to, and she did not agree with the proposed Bill. The Bill infringed on the mandate of the National School of Government (NSG), as it was responsible for training public servants: This framework was to be presented to the Committee, but had been temporarily withheld so that Cabinet could make a few amendments.

Ms Maneli said the Bill emphasised the PSC's independence, but she cited chapter ten of the Constitution as it already provided this independence. On remedial action, the Portfolio Committee ensured that the PSC proposals were given adequate attention; she believed that was what they were doing. The Bill sought to enhance the independence of the PSC, which implied that it functioned as an independent department. Following the point raised by Ms Mgweba, she said the PSC should play a direct role in appointments of the most senior roles, not for every appointment in the public service, as the Bill suggests. She supported the move to reject the Bill.

Ms Ntuli said she noticed a wrong perception of cadre deployment, so all the parties in Parliament presented their own manifestos to the public. She said the ruling party was there to service the electorate, putting them in the ruling position. Moving to the Bill proposed by Dr Schreiber, she thanked him for taking the time to draft it. She noted Ms Mgweba's points on the existing legislation that the Private Member's Bill was mimicking, and said it was good enough for Dr Schreiber to be part of this Committee and monitor and close the gaps when necessary. The Private Member's Bill overlapped with legislation and the NSG's policy framework. Ms Ntuli moved for the Bill not to be taken forward.

Dr Gondwe said she supported the Bill wholeheartedly, and commended Dr Schreiber for putting it forward. He had mentioned during his presentation on 8 June that the Bill aligned with the recommendations of the Committee and the findings and recommendations of the Zondo Commission. She emphasised the findings that cadre deployment was unconstitutional and unlawful. The Bill would prohibit politicians from holding positions in the public service. She had expressed her view on the country as being a mess because the corruption had eroded the public service, and attributed this to cadre deployment.

Recalling a time during the budget debate, she recalled how she had pleaded with the Committee not to reject the Bill simply because it stemmed from an opposing political member. She reiterated that plea and said if the Committee wanted to formulate a capable, efficient and ethical public service, they needed to listen to one another. She had noted Committee Members speaking about the government's implementations to strengthen the public service, and emphasised that it had not been finalised. Members spoke of the framework as the solution to all the problems, but it had not been implemented.

She raised the issue of compulsory lifestyle audits, and pointed out that the Western Cape was the only province making progress in that regard. She was unsure of what the Committee meant when they maintained that legislation already exists, because the problems were still there. The problems facing the public service were due to cadre deployment, and she emphasised points made by Mr Corrigan and Dr Schwella. Mr Corrigan had defined the features of a capable public service as being performance orientated, and comprised of skilled, career-oriented and non-partisan staff. She asked the Committee how they would achieve those features if the Committee did not view the proposed Bill favourably. She agreed with Dr Schwella's point on the Bill not addressing all the issues of cadre deployment, but it was a necessary step.

She pleaded with the Committee to put aside their political differences and put the interests of the country and public service at heart. She agreed with Dr Schwella's point that not dealing with cadre deployment would lead to more corruption, disrepair, and a lack of accountability and consequence management. She emphasised Dr Mthembu's point on a professional public service positioning South Africa in a changing global and international landscape. She maintained that the Bill was a first step in tackling the problem of cadre deployment, and the Committee would assist when they ensured the findings and recommendations of the Zondo Commission were realised.

Dr Schreiber's response

Dr L Schreiber (DA) started by providing additional information on questions and issues raised during deliberations.

Referring to the point that Members of the Bill made the PSC responsible for managing all recruitment in the public service, he recalled Ms Mgweba's quotation from the NDP. He responded by saying, "the inputs from the Public Affairs Research Institute was actually to do exactly that, and they felt the bill did not go far enough in that regard, while Ms Mgweba said it was going too far." He clarified that the Bill did not do what Ms Mgweba suggested, and cited Section 196 (4) (d) of the Constitution, which empowers the PSC to give directions to every sector, administration and institution in the public administration on recruitments, transfers, promotions and dismissals, and gives it the powers to enforce those directions.

He replied to Ms Mgweba's point on contradicting the NDP, saying that it did exactly what the NDP suggested regarding oversight, accountability powers, and independence of the PSC.

Responding to the idea of the Bill infringing on the NSG's mandate, he said that the NSG's mandate was about training the public service, and the Bill had nothing to do with training. He asserted that the principles were consistent with all the discussions on professionalising the public service. He reminded Ms Mgweba that Parliament's mandate extended beyond any other governmental department, and that it was the highest decision-making body in the country.

He replied to the citation of chapter ten of the Constitution, already providing the PSC with independence. He agreed with that point, but emphasised that it had not been implemented. He said the Bill would make the PSC financially independent of the executive and remove the office of the PSC from the Department of Public Service. This Bill did precisely what chapter ten in the Constitution states. He reminded the Committee of how, during a budget vote report on 6 May 2022, they had spoken about the importance of Kader Asmal's recommendation to make the PSC independent. He quoted the Committees' words during the budget report: "Appointment of the PSC Director General through the Public Service Act compromises the Commission's independence." Commenting that those words were adopted in the formal minutes, he said, "it was absolutely bizarre to suggest that implementing that which the Committee asks for -- the independence of the PSC -- is somehow at odds with chapter ten of the Constitution."

He replied to the point on remedial action, saying that if the Committee was entirely responsible for implementing PSC recommendations, then "this Committee is failing dismally". He said that 80% of PSC recommendations were not implemented. The reason why PSC recommendations were not implemented was because the PSC lacked the power to ensure the implementations were carried through. The Committee had complained about PSC recommendations not being implemented, "yet here is a solution on the table and suddenly strange reasons are being proffered for why this is inappropriate."

Addressing Ms Maneli's point on the PSC playing a direct role in the recruitment of heads of departments, he said it contradicted what Ms Mgweba had said. He explained that the Bill would lay the foundation for the PSC to issue direction, ensure oversight and accountability of all recruitment and appointment processes, and not directly manage all of those. He said it was entirely disingenuous to suggest the Bill did something which did not exist. "I would find it strange if someone just read the bill, and that they would make this kind of suggestion."

Lastly, Dr Schreiber spoke on the point about existing legislation that did what the Bill aims to do. He said that was incorrect, and there was no official Act that did any of the things Committee Members were talking about. He agreed with Dr Gondwe's point on the limitation that political office bearers should not work as public servants. This existed at the municipal level, but not at a provincial or national level, so the Bill would make this limitation consistent across all levels.

Referring to remedial action and enforcing merit-based appointments, everything discussed in the meeting confirmed how that was not the status quo. The status quo was a lack in these two areas, and he referred once more to the 80% of PSC recommendations not being implemented.

Responding to the Chairperson's question on the basis which necessitated the Bill, he said it was the lack of the required merit-based appointments, the prohibition on political office bearers at the national-and provincial-level (when that was not the case at the municipal level), and enforcing the remedial action and financial and administrative independence of the PSC. These were all points the Committee (and government) had spoken about for years.

He finished by saying it would be "very hypocritical and quite shocking to reject a proposal which does exactly what government and Committee had said they wanted. The kind of blowback and hypocrisy that would expose was quite worrying, and if that was done purely for political reasons, we must be honest about it; let's not come up with nonsense excuses. Say that this Bill is being rejected because the ANC cannot stand the idea of the DA proposing solutions, and then at least we will have a bit of honesty in this conversation."

The Chairperson replied by asking Dr Schreiber not to be offensive, asserting that no one was advancing "nonsense." Committee Members were advancing views. He asked that the Committee maintain institutional discipline.

Ms Motsepe thanked Dr Schreiber for the hard work he had displayed. She would like to abstain due to the Bill not being taken to her organisation for deliberation. She suggested that next time it would be taken into consideration to take it further.

Inkosi R Cebekhulu (IFP) spoke about the tendency in local, provincial and national government to change every time a political employee came into office, to push out those who worked administratively to allow them to bring their own appointees to work with them. He asserted that this was a breeding ground for corruption. If the proposed Bill followed the record of the Zondo Commision, it would have had an optimistic path in assisting the government. He brought attention to the public reports of changes in administration, and allegations of corruption perpetrated by those carrying political and administrative roles.

He admitted that the IFP had not deliberated on the Bill. The corruption mainly affected the most vulnerable who did not understand what was happening, except those in office were continuously lining their pockets. The Bill proposed by Dr Schreiber would be a move in the right direction. He commented that when an administrator was appointed in one ruling party's regime and another ruling party was voted in, that person would not "bow down" to the new political leaders. Each newly appointed senior political employee had a new administrator appointed. He asked, "are we serving the interests of the voters, or are we serving the interests of certain individuals?"

Ms Ntuli interjected to clarify an issue on legislation. She said that if it was before Cabinet, the Committee could not pass the same legislation, even if it was not signed by the President. Addressing Dr Schreiber, she said that since he was part of the Committee, he "feels the heat that we are feeling". She felt it wrong to say there was no legislation, when it was there for them as Parliamentarians and as a Portfolio Committee. She said there were two pieces of legislation before Cabinet, and the Committee Members rejected the Bill because it was a duplication. She concluded that the Committee should not be viewed as confused.

Dr Schreiber responded to the point raised by Ms Ntuli on duplication. He said that it would require analysis before claiming duplication. He had looked at the draft laws -- nothing that was before Parliament -- and had not found any direct duplication. He requested evidence or an analysis of the claim of duplication. He reiterated that the Bill was in no conflict with any other discussions, and it was his understanding that it was the only Bill before Parliament at the time. He commented that the other bills had not materialised and if they were passed, they would need to fit into the current proposed Bill as it was before the Committee. He asked that the Bill be judged on its merits.

The Chairperson submitted his assessment of the deliberations. He said the views in favour were fewer than those opposing the Bill. He noted the abstentions from the NFP and EFF, but said his overall impression was that the Committee did not support the Bill.

He decided to add to the deliberations. He did not agree with the definition of cadre deployment, as it seemed normal that a new political party in power would deploy personnel from its own ranks to ensure and maintain mutual understanding while its goals were implemented. He submitted that cadre deployment did not seek to deploy unqualified, incompetent individuals. If those deployed were not competent, this should be addressed. The Chairperson made an example of an ANC municipal manager of the Western Cape, who the DA did not hesitate to remove because they wanted someone they could trust and who would ensure the party's implementations materialised.

He did not support the Bill, and assessed the Bill as rejected by the Committee.

Dr Schreiber interjected, saying, "Tell Judge Zondo that!"

The Chairperson responded that Judge Zondo was not governing on their behalf. Whatever he had raised in that report, the President would take it to Parliament, and Parliament would debate that.

Ms Ntuli said Dr Schreiber should withdraw the statement about Committee Members giving "nonsense reasons." He had to respect the Portfolio Committee. He must withdraw the "nonsense" comment, as this was loose language.

The Chairperson asked if Dr Schreiber would withdraw "that offensive language?"

Dr Schreiber replied: "Which offensive language?"

The Chairperson answered: "To say other people were talking nonsense."

Dr Schreiber responded: "When did I say that? I said, 'you must say to Judge Zondo that this Parliament rejects this bill'."

The Chairperson said he had heard him himself, and was therefore asking him to withdraw it.

Dr Schreiber asked if he was referring to the statement about reporting this to Judge Zondo.

The Chairperson said it was the statement that other people were talking nonsense. If he was not going to withdraw it, he rejected what Dr Schreiber said, as the Chairperson.

He concluded the meeting by stating the Committee decided that the Bill was not desirable.

The meeting was adjourned.

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