Mamusa Municipality Intervention: Consideration of Committee Report

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Meeting report

National council of provinces select committee: Local Government and Administration

4 August 2004

Acting Chairperson: Mr B Mkhaliphi (Mpumalanga, ANC)

Document handed out:
Draft Committee Report on Mamusa Municipality intervention

The Committee met to discuss the Committee Report on the provincial intervention of Mamusa Municipality of the North West where the local council had been dissolved and an administrator had been appointed from 23 June until 3 September. The Committee Report stemmed from a visit to the municipality on 12-15 July by the Committee. As committee members had not had an opportunity to study the report, it was agreed that the Committee would discuss the report and its recommendations at their next meeting.

The Committee discussed the procedure for the appointment of an acting committee chairperson due to the extended absence of the elected chairperson

Appointment of Acting Chairperson
The Committee Secretary drew attention to the continued absence of the current chairperson, Mr Shiceka, due to surgical constraints and indicated the need to appoint an acting Chairperson in the interim. A call was made for nominations and Mr Mkhaliphi (ANC) was nominated and duly accepted.

The Acting Chairperson requested a representative of the Parliamentary Secretariat to explain procedure with regard to the extended absence of the elected Chairperson. What regulations existed to govern this scenario?

The representative responded that it was not protocol to identify an acting chairperson in the absence of the present chairperson as the incumbent needs to indicate acceptance of any proposed arrangement. This was necessary in order to avoid any future potential conflict. The relevant rules state that an acting chairperson can be appointed for the duration of a particular meeting but not for longer.

Mr A Moseki (ANC) asked whether an acting chairperson could not be appointed for a longer period of time and in the absence of the current chairperson?

The Secretariat representative responded that the committee could only appoint an acting chairperson for the duration of the present meeting.

Mr Moseki raised a concern about this arrangement relative to the continuity and efficacy of the committee's responsibilities. Would the committee not be handicapped by the lack of guidance from a chairperson on an ongoing basis?

The Secretariat representative suggested that the sitting acting chairperson could possibly occupy the position until the return of the original chairperson. However, it must not be assumed that the current holder would take precedence over the existing chairperson.

Mamusa Municipality Committee Report: consideration
The Acting Chairperson requested that members consider the report before them and apologised that the report had not been provided to them earlier.

Mr Moseki indicated that members needed more time to reflect on the content of the report.

The Acting Chairperson inquired from the committee secretary as to the urgency of the report and suggested that the deadline could be extended.

Mr Z Ntuli (ANC) reminded the committee members that those members who participated in the drawing up of the document were present and their input could be ascertained through questions.

The Acting Chairperson then asked whether the discussion surrounding the document could be concluded at the next meeting

Mr D Worth (DA) recommended that clear oversight rules be applied to the area in question particularly with regard to upcoming municipal elections.

The Acting Chairperson reminded the committee that the municipality had already been dissolved and not suspended. The Committee had undertaken research on the municipality not to impose legal sanction but as "a learning curve".

Mr Moseki stated that due to the completion of the process of dissolution, it implied less urgency on the part of the Committee in dealing with the report.

The Acting Chairperson agreed with this statement but insisted that the committee still had a role to play as the summary dissolution of a municipality was a rare event that needed to be considered.

Mention was then made of the upcoming trip to Pretoria to attend the launch of the Municipal Infrastructure Grant and Road Project on the 12 August. A report from those members that intended to attend was requested. Members were asked to liaise with the committee secretary to arrange travel details.

Meeting adjourned.


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