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MEMBERS’ LEGISLATIVE PROPOSALS: SELECT COMMITTEE
16 November 2007
MS JOYCE GONGXEKA’S PETITION & NEW EERSTERUS PETITION: DELIBERATIONS
Chairperson: Mr F Adams (ANC, Western Cape)
Documents handed out:
Petition of Sergeant K J Gongxeka
Referral of Petition on Water Service Delivery by Municipality
Audio recording of meeting
The Committee noted that it had engaged with the Department of Defence on the petition of Ms J Gongxeka, but no response had yet been received. When that response was received the Committee would reconsider the matter.
It was noted that a petition had been received from residents at New Eersterus, Hammanskraal, setting out their desperate need for water and other services The Committee proposed to have a one-day oversight visit on site, and to meet with the relevant petitioners, the municipality, Gauteng Local Government, the committee of Gauteng and the MEC, to try to work out how to get service delivery. It was stressed that this Committee must be seen to attend to petitions.
The Committee briefly discussed preliminary arrangements for the workshop to be held in Gauteng from 22 to 25 January 2008. E-Petitions would link in with the E-governance system, and Mr Adams was investigating the matter. It was suggested that the Committee attend the International Forum on E-Governance and E-Petitions in London in February 2008. The programme for the workshop would be finalised in the next week.
Petition of Ms J Gongxeka
The Chairperson noted that the Committee had engaged with the Department of Defence as to what had happened but no response had yet been received. When that response was received the Committee could then decide on what action to take regarding Ms Gongxeka’s petition.
New Eersterus Petition
The Chairperson noted that a petition was received from the residents at Block F4 and F2 Extension, New Eersterus, Hammanskraal, under cover of a letter from Ms H Monkwe and Mr M Fisher, setting out their desperate need for water and other services.
The petition was discussed the previous week and approval was needed for the Committee’s proposal that a subcommittee consisting of Mr Mzizi, Mr Watson, Mr Adams and one other member go to New Eersterus, Hammanskraal, to look at the situation there and meet with the relevant petitioners. They would also invite the municipality as well as the Gauteng Local Government, the committee of Gauteng and the MEC to attend. The matter would be placed before the MEC of Local government of Gauteng with the intention of getting service delivery. The oversight visit was suggested for 29 November and the Committee Secretary was to make the necessary arrangements with the municipality and local government.
It was further suggested that Mr Adams should send a letter to Mrs Oliphant and to Mr Setola for their approval, and then inform the members as listed. The other Member should preferably come from around Gauteng because of travel implications. Mr Adams would also follow up with Ms Monkwe and Mr Fisher to meet with them there and arrange for a practical, physical oversight.
Mr A Watson (DA) suggested meeting at the municipality in Pretoria and they could take the delegation to the site. He stressed that the message must go out that when petitions were received, this Committee would attend to them. It was not always within the Committee’s ambit to solve the problem, but they would certainly attend to the investigation to see what could be done. .
Mr Adams proposed meeting with the municipality first so they could address the Committee on the problem, and then from there have a joint meeting at Hammanskraal with the municipality, local government representatives and the people.
The committee discussed preliminary arrangements for the workshop to be held in Gauteng from 22 to 25 January 2008.
Mr Adams was looking into E-Petitions that would go in with the E-Governance system.
Adv Zuraya Adhikarie, Senior Parliamentary Legal Advisor, agreed. The Constitution said that Parliament must facilitate public involvement in legislative and other processes. Whilst these may not be acceptable to every part of the community e-petitioning was another method to facilitate public involvement as some people were fully reliant on technology.
Mr Adams continued that the International Forum on E-Governance and E-Petitions would be held in London in February, and he felt it was critical that the Committee attend. If the Committee were to lay down guidelines for petitions it should deal with E-Petitions as well. When attending that workshop the Committee should also visit to the Scottish Parliament, which was the first parliament in the world to do E-Petitions; then look at the German system that was being introduced.
The committee discussed the draft programme for the workshop. It was decided that the programme would be adopted and finalised in the following week.
The meeting was adjourned.
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