Constitution 13th A/Bill & Cross Boundary Municipalities Laws Repeal & Related Matters A /Bill: adoption

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Justice and Correctional Services

12 September 2007
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Meeting Summary

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Meeting report

JUSTICE and PROVINCIAL AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT PORTFOLIO COMMITTEES
13 September 2007
CONSTITUTION THIRTEENTH AMENDMENT BILL & CROSS BOUNDARY MUNICIPALITIES LAWS REPEAL & RELATED MATTERS AMENDMENT BILL: ADOPTION

Chairpersons:
Ms F Chohan (ANC) (first part); Mr S Tsenoli (ANC) (second part)

DOCUMENTS HANDED OUT:
Draft Report of Portfolio Committee on Justice & Constitutional Development on Second (amended) [Part 1] & [Part 2]
Constitution Thirteenth Amendment Bill [B 24-2007]
Update memorandum from Superintendent General, Local Government & Traditional Affairs

Audio recording of meeting

SUMMARY
The Portfolio Committees on Justice and Provincial and Local Government sat jointly to consider the two linked Bills: the Constitutional Thirteenth Amendment Bill and Cross Boundary Municipalities Laws Repeal and Related Matters Amendment Bill. The Justice Committee tabled and discussed in depth its report. Various technical amendments were made to the wording. It was noted that part of the report made reference to the two Committees sitting to consider the matter, although each of the Committees would in fact vote only on the Bill that fell within its portfolio.

Once the wording of the Report had been finalised, the Justice Committee voted unanimously to adopt the Constitution Thirteenth Amendment Bill. After this vote was taken, the Provincial and Local Government Committee voted on the Cross Boundary Municipalities Laws Repeal Bill, and voted unanimously to adopt it. Both Bills would be referred to the House in the following week.

MINUTES
The meeting commenced with the Portfolio Committee on Justice considering the Constitution Thirteenth Amendment Bill (the Bill). The draft Report of the Committee was tabled, and the Chairperson requested Mr Johan Labuschagne, Director, Department of Justice, to take the Committee through the document line by line.

The document set out the background to the Bill. Paragraphs 1.1 and 1.2 were confirmed.

Paragraph 1.3 dealt with the area of Matatiele local municipality. The Chairperson expressed reservations about the use of the word “transferred”. After discussion it was agreed to substitute this word with “relocated”.

Paragraph 1.4 contained a sentence in brackets and italics noting that once the Constitution Twelfth Amendment Act (CTAA) was declared, in part, to be invalid, the Repeal of Cross Boundaries Act, which was directly related to the CTAA, was also found invalid. The Chairperson suggested that this sentence form part of the main report. The Chairperson also suggested, for consistency, that the word "transferred" also be substituted in this paragraph with "relocated".

Mr Labuschagne expressed the opinion that the changes were technical.

The Chairperson emphasised that she was endeavouring to achieve consistency of grammar, language, tone and style.

A similar substitution of "relocated" was made in paragraph 1.5.

There was discussion on the punctuation of paragraph 1.6, but it was decided to leave this as worded.

In paragraph 2, the description of the Amendment Bill was amended by the addition of the numbering "B24-2007".

The Chairperson noted that in paragraph 2 there was reference to "consideration and approval of certain portions of the Constitution Twelfth Amendment Bill". It was agreed to substitute the word "provisions" for "portions".

 


In paragraph 2.2. it was agreed to change “direction given by the Constitutional Court”, last line to “directives given by the Constitutional Court.”

In paragraph 3.2, it was agreed that the reference to "a Bill" be amplified by "the Thirteenth Amendment Bill"

Paragraph 3.3 was discussed, but the wording remained as printed.

Paragraph 4.1 was amended in line eight, by addition of the word "namely" before the words "as contemplated".

Mr Labuschagne, in answer to a question from the Chairperson, confirmed that paragraph 4.3 referred to all submission made by all partiers .

In respect of paragraph 4.4, Mr Labuschagne enquired whether the verb "do not oppose" was in the correct tense. The Committee was happy with this wording. The subparagraphs were considered by the Committee but left as worded.

In respect of paragraph 4, including the sub-paragraphs, Adv S Holomisa (ANC) noted that there were preferences expressed as to the provinces, but that these were not reflected with the names of the parties making the submissions.

The Chairperson clarified that ballot-type petitions had been received which contained 30 pages of signatures by individuals. She was of the opinion that Adv Holomisa’s concerns would be answered by how the Committee dealt with the report.

In relation to Paragraph 4.5, Imam G Solomon (ANC) expressed his concerns with the words “adequate substantive reasons". The Committee discussed the wording and agreed that the word "adequate" would be changed to "adequately".

It was noted that the submissions would be appended to the report.

Paragraph 4.6 was to be amended by the addition of the words “by the Department of Provincial and Local Government” between committees and indicated

In paragraph 4.8, it was agreed to insert a comma after the reference to the Thirteenth Amendment Bill in line 4. Furthermore, it was agreed to insert the words "submits it" after the reference to "Committee" in line 5.

In respect of paragraph 5, the Chairperson pointed out that the two portfolio committees were sitting in one combined meeting, as referred to in this paragraph. However, the Justice Portfolio Committee was concerned with the constitutional aspects, and the Provincial and Local Committee with the boundary issue, but that the two matters were intertwined. It was agreed that the Justice Committee must note the provisions. The Chairperson added that she believed the wording of this paragraph adequately dealt with the submissions received.

Mr Labuschagne suggested that in paragraph 5.2, line 6 be amplified by adding the phrase "that concerns them".

Dr Petra Bouwer, Executive Manager: Compliance, Department of Provincial and Local Government cautioned that the approach should be the same as was used when considering the Twelfth Constitution Amendment Bill.

Under paragraph 5.2, Mr Labuschagne raised the concern that this paragraph might create the impression that all Provinces were required to support the Amendment, although it was in fact only KwaZulu Natal and the Eastern Cape.

The Chairperson suggested, in respect of paragraph 5.2(d) and 5.3, that the word "approve" was more appropriate than the current "support". The Committee discussed extensively the best wording. Finally it was agreed that the words "approve or support" should be used

The Committee Secretary confirmed that seven Members were present, and this met the requirements for a quorum.

The Amendment Bill was put to the vote. Members unanimously adopted the Bill.

Mr S L Tsenoli (ANC) then assumed the Chair.

The Chairperson read out the Report of the Provincial and Local Government Portfolio Committee on the Cross Boundary Municipalities Laws Repeal and Related Matters Amendment Bill.

After considering the matter, the Members of that Committee resolved unanimously to adopt the Bill and the Report.


The meeting was adjourned.

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