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MINERALS AND ENERGY AD HOC COMMITTEE
23 June 2004
COMMITTEE REPORT ON DEPARTMENT BUDGET: ADOPTION
Chairperson: Mr M Goniwe (ANC)
Documents handed out:
Committee Report on Department Budget
Members were most critical that they had not been notified of the meeting, and the report had not been made available for Members to prepare comment, within a respectable time. The Chair proposed that the Report be discussed at a meeting already scheduled for Friday 25 June, and that Members use the interim period to peruse the document.
The Chair stated that it was an urgent priority for Members to study the Budget Report so it could be adopted at a meeting scheduled for Friday 25 June. Members should then offer feedback on the Report.
Mr C Kekana (ANC) said that he had only just found out about the meeting, and that the Report had only been delivered to him the previous day. He would not be able attend a meeting on Friday. Mr E Nqcobo (ANC) also expressed his dissatisfaction with the process.
The Chair gave a summary of the standard procedure in progressing from the Ad Hoc Committee to a Parliamentary Committee, then to Treasury and finally to Parliament. He then explained that any MP had the right to attend, speak and vote in any Committee, even if a member, provided that the allocated number of delegates was not exceeded. The problem was that the Report had not been finished in time, not been circulated in time, and thus could not be adopted immediately. It had only been discovered on the previous day that the Report was not finished. As there was a meeting scheduled for the Friday, it was decided to make use of that opportunity to discuss and adopt the Report then, which would give Members two days in which to evaluate it and prepare their comments. They had also only learned about the meeting on the Friday (when the Chairpersons of Select Committees would be elected) the previous day.
Professor I Mohamed (ANC) recounted how he had been stopped by a chairperson of another committee from participating in a meeting of which he had not been a designated member.
The Chair added that the venue for the meeting had only become available the previous day when the booking for the committee room was cancelled. Concerns about the unacceptable procedures were noted, particularly by Mr Ngcobo. Mr E Lucas (IFP) added that the situation had at least given Members more time to study the document.
The meeting was adjourned.
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