Security Industry Regulation Bill: Deliberations

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28 March 2001
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Meeting Summary

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Meeting report


28 March 2001

Chairperson: Mr M E George

Relevant Documents:
Security Industry Regulation Bill
Financial Implications Relating to the Expenses of Members of the Board/Authority (See Appendix)
Policy Document on the Future Regulation of the Private Security Industry (email for document)

The committee strongly criticised the South African Police Services (SAPS) management for the unsatisfactory, haphazard and inept manner in which they handled the presentation. This was primarily because SAPS management failed to give a detailed account of the financial implications for the state of the proposed Security Industry Regulation Authority

The committee said farewell to Gen Viljoen (FF) who is leaving Parliament.

Present at the meeting were Mr Rasegatla (from the Secretariat), Mr Soman (Legal Director, Secretariat) and Advocate Kok (from the Department). Mr Rasegatla conducted the briefing.

Security Industry Regulation Bill
The Chairperson pointed out that the Security Industry Regulation Bill has serious implications for security operations in the country. He pointed out that in countries where people have faith in police services, private security firms are considered to be merely complementary. On the other hand, he continued, in countries where citizens have no faith in police services, private security firms are looked at as a necessary alternative. It is significant, the Chair observed, that in some cases private security firms have better resources than the police. He therefore called upon members to carry the discussion with these issues in mind.

Mr Rasegatla told the committee there would be no financial implications to the state following the setting up of the proposed regulatory body. He stated that the security industry generates adequate funds to finance itself. He added that a lot of people would be regulated hence funds would be generated from levies and fines.

Mr Soman added that the cost of regulation is estimated at R28 million per annum. He explained it is projected that income would exceed expenditure by four million per annum. He said further that sources of income would be registration fees and monthly levies from officers and their employers.

Gen Viljoen (FF) held the view that if the industry regulates itself, it must pay. However if the state comes in as a regulating authority, he sees no reason why the state should fund its operations from levies charged on the industry. He noted that such a move would be an extra tax burden to those in the industry, which is totally uncalled for.

Responding to this concern, Mr Rasegatla pointed out that the security industry generates substantial profits from its operations. There is no need for the state to expend taxpayer money to regulate the industry. His assertion that the state is a regulatory body was met with a chorus of disapproval from members. Mr Ndlovu (IFP) said that Mr Rasegatla had proceeded on a false premise.

At this juncture, the Chair remarked that the presenter had not conclusively explained to the committee how much regulation would cost the state. He questioned the wisdom of budgeting on the bases of salaries and levies as indicated by the Secretariat. He noted further that there was no way the envisioned costs would consist of salaries alone which is the only information that the Committee had been provided with (see Appendix). He cautioned that the committee would not sign a blank cheque where no concrete figures are given.

Mr Rasegatla was cut short when he attempted to request from the committee time to invite those in the industry to give an account of the cost element to the industry. Mr Ndlovu (IFP) expressed his dismay at the unhelpful attitude the SAPS management was displaying towards the committee. He said the committee was not getting the kind of quality support expected from the SAPS management. He called upon the Chair to heavily censure this ineptitude. Advocate Swart (DP) concurred with Mr Ndlovu and asked the SAPS management to take its work seriously. Mr Zondo (ANC) urged presenters to be fully prepared when making appearances before the committee.

The Chair observed that the state spends a lot of taxpayer money to fly people in to make presentations to parliamentary committees and it is not right for committee work to be taken lightly. He directed the SAPS management to get their act together before making further presentations to the committee. He then deferred the issue of the financial implications to allow the department to come up with a detailed computation. The Chair noted, however, that the deferment would not affect the scheduled public hearings on the subject. The same will proceed as planned.

Farewell to Gen Viljoen
The Chair drew the attention of members to the impending departure of Gen Viljoen who is due to retire from parliamentary service. He invited Mr Ndlovu (IFP) to bid farewell to Gen Viljoen on behalf of the committee. Mr Ndlovu paid glowing tribute to Gen Viljoen for his guidance and experience and said the committee would make it a point to tap the invaluable wisdom of Gen Viljoen whenever that need arises.

Gen Viljoen on his part thanked the committee for what he called an eventful working environment. He said he will miss the Safety and Security committee most of all. He pointed out that of all parliamentary committees the Safety and Security committee was the most important as the committee was the guarantor of people's lives and property.

Before adjourning, the committee deplored the wanton and senseless killings that are currently taking place in the country. This issue was tabled by member Ndlovu (IFP). He said the committee was in charge of security in the country. It must, therefore, be seen to take a firm and clear stand on the grave deterioration of security. The Chair noted this important concern and condemned the senseless killing of farmers and policemen. Committee members gave the Chair the mandate to arrange for a special session with Minister Steve Tshwete and SAPS Commissioner Jackie Selebi.

The meeting was adjourned.

Appendix 1:

In terms of the Security Officer's Act of 1987 as amended by Act 104 of 1997, the Security Officer's Interim Board consists of 13 Members, namely:

1. The Chairperson
2. Three security officers representing the employees
3. Three security officers representing the employers
4. Three persons who are users of security services
5. Three additional members who are fit and proper to serve on the board.

Current Financial Implications for the State
(A) Remuneration of members of the Council
In terms of the contract between the State and the chairperson.
- The Chairperson is paid at the rate of R2 500.00 per day.
- Subject to the maximum of R30 000 per month

The remuneration of the Chairperson is made in terms of section 4(4) of the current Act. The Minister in consultation with the Portfolio Committee determined the remuneration of the Chairperson will be on the level of a Chief Director in the Public Service.

The other members of the Board are paid from the funds of the Board a standard amount of R 2000 per month for attending meetings of the Board. In addition to the said standard amount, an amount of R200.00 per hour for attendance of and participation in committee and sub-committee meetings.

The administrative structures of the board are determined by the board and its staff are appointed by the board and paid from the funds of the board.

Options on the Financial implications for the state in relation to the envisaged Regulatory Authority.

Option 1
All members of the Authority be paid by the state at the current rate.
Cost Chairperson = R30 000.00 per month
Members = R2 000.00 per month plus R200.00 per hour for meetings multiplied by 4 members.
Estimated monthly total cost R38 000 excluding hourly costs per meeting

Option 2
All members be paid from the funds of the Authority at no cost for the State.

Option 3
The Chairperson be paid by the State and other members be paid from the funds of the Authority.
- Cost for the State (Chairperson)
- Cost for the Authority (other members x4) excluding hourly rate.
R30 000 per month R8 000 per month
Based on the financial report provided by the Security Officer's Interim Board, it is evident that the Industry generates sufficient funds to sustain itself. It is therefore our proposal that option 2, be adopted.

It is proposed that the Minister make a determination, regarding such remuneration, by notice in the Gazette after consulting with the Portfolio Committee.

(B) Other financial implications for the State
Chapter 14 of the Bill makes provision for appeals. Clause 29 of the Bill provides for the Minister to appoint an Appeal Committee to consider any appeals. The members of the Appeal Committee will be borne by the state. It will be difficult to quantify the total cost implications but the Minister will determine the rate of remuneration in consultation with the Minister of Finance.


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