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CONSTITUTIONAL AFFAIRS PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE
2 November 1998
MUNICIPAL STRUCTURES BILL [B68B-98]; 3RD & 4TH CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT BILLS: DISCUSSION
Amendments for consideration (Municipal Structures Bill): 23 October 1998
Municipal Structures Bill as amended by the Portfolio Committee [B68B-98]
The committee met to approve unanimously approximately 55 last-minute technical amendments to the Municipal Structures Bill before the Bill is voted on in the National Assembly on 4 November. Two amendments that were deemed substantive were also introduced and passed with the National Party and Inkatha Freedom Party dissenting.
The meeting was closed to the public during discussion on the 3rd and 4th Constitutional Amendment Bills. On reopening the meeting, it was announced that no consensus had been reached amongst the political parties. They will meet to discuss the two bills tomorrow pending negotiations later this evening.
3rd and 4th Constitutional Amendment Bills
The meeting was closed during discussion on these bills. All parties are in agreement about the 4th Constitutional Amendment Bill but no consensus was reached on the 3rd Constitutional Amendment Bill. However the department and the ANC study group believe that the two bills are linked and do not want to pass the one without the other. They will meet to discuss these bills tomorrow pending negotiations later this evening.
Municipal Structures Bill
The committee went through the many minor technical errata and amendments that needed to be processed hastily. These consisted mainly of punctuation and grammar errors and inaccurate section references.
Mr Hahndick, the State Law Advisor, was called in to the meeting to advise on process as some of the amendments had not been caught prior to the printing of B68B-98. He was asked if any of the errata and amendments were substantive which would require formal tabling in the Order Paper as 2 600 copies of B68B-98 had already been printed. (The chairperson, Mr Carrim, requested that Mr Hahndick withdraw the remaining copies other than the copies already circulated to the National Assembly). Mr Hahndick ruled that only two amendments were substantive:
The definition of election in Clause 1 will include the phrase "and section 23 (1)(c)" at the end.
In section 28(a) "subject to the rules and orders" will be inserted.
There had been concern that the formula referred to in Schedules 1 and 2 was incorrect (due to a typographical error) but this was not the case.
A quorate vote was required for the substantive amendments. The committee approved unanimously the technical amendments. The National Party and Inkatha Freedom Party voted against the substantive amendments due to the fact that they had voted against the Bill.
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