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JOINT BUDGET COMMITTEE MEETING
5 JUNE 2007
COMMITTEE FOURTH QUARTER EXPENDITURE REPORT:
Co-Chairpersons: Ms L Mabe (ANC)
Mr B Mkhaliphi (ANC, Mpumalanga)
Documents handed out:
Research report on Expenditure in the Fourth Quarter
Audio Recording of the Meeting
The Committee considered the first fifteen pages of the Fourth Quarter Expenditure Report. Concerns were raised with expenditure by the Departments of Home Affairs, Sports and Recreation, Arts and Culture and water Affairs and Forestry. Due to time constraints, the remainder of the Report would be discussed at the next meeting. The Committee also discussed its travel arrangements for the upcoming budget analysis workshop. Members expressed their dissatisfaction at the fact that Parliament has never presented its budget vote to this Committee. Minutes of previous Committee meetings were adopted, with amendments.
Committee Fourth Quarter Expenditure Report
Mr Abdullah Ganief, Parliamentary Researcher, took the Committee through the first 15 pages of the Report.
The Committee requested its Secretary, Mr Perran Hahndiek, to write a letter to the Department of Home Affairs as that Department had not maintained contact with the Committee.
The Committee was not satisfied with the reasons for late expenditure by the Department of Public Enterprises, who stated that they only received funds in the middle of the financial year.
Major concerns were raised regarding the Department of Home Affairs. The main issues were the inability of the Department to retain employees and its poor service delivery, especially as the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup loomed.
Ms Mabe suggested that the investigation that was conducted by the Home Affairs task force was very important, and a speedy report back from the task team was required before the Committee and the Department of Home Affairs could meet for constructive dialogue.
Ms Robinson suggested an impromptu visit to a branch of the Department of Home Affairs to experience and investigate the problems within the Department. Members unanimously agreed.
Mr Ganief noted that the Department of Sports and Recreation South Africa was identified as an ‘end of year spender’, and it has been identified that the department still has vacancies to fill.
The Department of Water Affairs and Forestry was to write a letter to the Committee explaining reasons for its under spending, as the Research unit was unable to obtain the relevant information.
The Committee was very alarmed by the ‘drastic’ overspending by the Department of Arts and Culture and that of Parliament, especially as no information was provided on the spending habits of Parliament. The Committee asked for transparency and accountability when it came to Parliamentary overspending.
Due to time constraints, Ms Mabe had to halt further discussions on the Report, as other items on the agenda needed consideration.
Upcoming Budget Analysis Workshop
Ms Mabe further recommended that pressure should be applied on Parliament to appear before the Committee to discuss issues surrounding the Budget Analysis Workshop.
Mr Mkhaliphi voiced disgruntlement at the fact that Parliament has never presented its Budget Vote to the Committee, nor to Parliament’s Oversight and Accountability Committee.
Adoption of minutes
The Committee adopted the minutes of its meetings on 8,11,15 and 18 May, with amendments.
The meeting was adjourned.
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