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SAFETY AND SECURITY PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE
16 October 2001
SECURITY INDUSTRY REGULATION BILL: FORMAL CONSIDERATION
Chairperson: Mr M E George
Private Security Industry Regulation Bill
The Committee commenced with formal consideration and voting on the Bill. Many issues remained unresolved and Members asked for guidance on the process the Committee was to follow in reaching the point of voting on the Bill. The issue of foreign investment in the industry eventually reached closure as the ANC had a total change of heart on the issue. The Democratic Party expressed gladness over the turnaround by the ANC to allow foreign investment in the industry, however surprising it was. The DP, NNP and IFP voted against the Bill. From the outset of the deliberations three parties did not agree with the lack of representivity of the industry on the Council of the Authority, the extensive powers of the Minister and so forth. The UDM and the ACDP voted in favour of the Bill but with certain reservations. The ANC unanimously voted in favour of the Bill. The Bill was consequently passed.
The Committee asked the Chair for guidance on the process that they were to follow.
The Chairperson, Mr George, explained that the Committee would firstly proceed through the Bill clause by clause and thereafter the Committee would vote on the Bill per chapter. Thereafter the Committee would vote on the Bill as a whole.
Adv P Swart (ACDP) was concerned that certain issues like those pertaining to the powers of inspectors of the Authority and the involvement of foreigners in the security industry remained very much unresolved. The Chair said that issues would be dealt with as they come up in the relevant clauses.
Private Security Industry Regulation Bill
The title of the Bill now reads, "Private Security Industry Bill". The committee unanimously voted in favour of it.
The Committee unanimously voted in favour of it.
Clause 1: Definitions
Adv Swart (DP) stated that he would not support the clause as the DP disagrees on the definition of "locksmith" and "security equipment".
The Committee voted in favour of Chapter 1 with the exception of the DP and the IFP.
Clause 9(2): Functions of the Chairperson
The ANC felt that if the functions of the Chairperson of the Authority were as set out in the clause, it would not make sense to employ him or her on a full-time basis. The Committee agreed that the Minister should decide on the need for the Chairperson to be employed on a full-time basis if the need should arise.
The Committee unanimously voted in favour of Chapter 2 with the exception of the DP and the IFP.
Ms A Van Wyk (UDM) stated that even though she supports the Chapter, she asked that it be put on record that the UDM objects to Clause 6 as it does not make provision for industry representation on the Council of the Authority.
Chapter 3: Registration as Security Service Provider
The Committee unanimously voted in favour of Chapter 3.
Chapter 4: Proper Conduct and Appeal
Clause 27: Code of Conduct
The ANC felt that Clause 27(3)(b) does not adequately address the issue of minimum wages of security officers. The ANC called for Ministerial involvement so as to ensure that wages are appropriate.
Ms Van Wyk (UDM) and Adv Swart (DP) felt that labour issues should be left to the appropriate labour authorities.
The Committee agreed to leave the clause as is.
They unanimously voted in favour of Chapter 4.
Chapter 5: Monitoring and Investigation
Clause 31: Inspection of Security Service Providers
Rev K Meshoe (ACDP) had concerns about the provision in Clause 31(1). It allows an inspector of the Authority to inspect the affairs of a security service provider as well as "of any other person" who employs a security officer. The concern was that ordinary persons who have a security officer protecting their property would be prone to inspections by the inspectors.
Adv Kok, Chief Legal Adviser to the Department, explained that the provision had been included so as to allow for inspections of the in-house security of institutions like Anglo-American.
Ms Van Wyk (UDM) felt that if the provision were to be excluded there would be a loophole in the legislation. The Chair agreed that the provision should not be excluded and stated that the fears of the ACDP are covered, as the inspections would only apply to persons involved in the security industry.
The Committee was convinced, with the exception of Rev Meshoe (ACDP).
Clause 32: Powers of inspectors relating to Security Service Providers
The ACDP had concerns about Clause 32(3)(a); it was felt that the peace officer powers bestowed on inspectors in terms of the Criminal Procedure Act were too far reaching.
The DP and the ANC shared these concerns.
Adv Kok however allayed these concerns by pointing out that the exercise of the aforementioned powers would be limited by Clause 32(3)(b).
The Committee unanimously voted in favour of Chapter 5 with the exception of the ACDP who abstained.
Chapter 6: General Provisions
The Chairperson stated that the ANC had changed its stance on foreign investment in the industry after consulting with stakeholders. The ANC had previously asked that specific provisions be included in the Bill to exclude foreign investment. They had been adamant on the exclusion of foreigners from the industry. It would seem that a compromise had been reached and that foreigners would now be allowed to invest in the security service industry.
Adv Gaum (NNP) who in previous discussions had strongly advocated for foreign investment to be allowed in the industry seemed very pleased about the turnaround in the ANC’s stance. He extended his thanks to the ANC committee members as well to the Minister of Safety and Security: Mr Steve Tswete, for their support for foreign investment in the security industry.
Adv Swart said it was surprising that the ANC had changed their minds so suddenly after being so adamant on the exclusion of foreigners.
The Committee unanimously voted in favour of Chapter 6.
The Committee unanimously voted in favour of the schedule.
Voting on the entire Bill
The Chair called for parties to vote on the Bill.
Adv Gaum (NNP) voted against the Bill, because his party was in disagreement with the provisions on locksmiths, powers of the Minister as well as the lack of representivity of the industry on the Council of the Authority.
Adv Swart also voted against the Bill for much the same reasons put forth by Adv Gaum.
Mr Ferreira (IFP) voted against the Bill as he felt that industry representation on the Council should have been provided for. He also felt that the Authority’s power to close down security businesses pending investigations on them was too extensive.
Ms Van Wyk (UDM) voted in favour of the Bill though her party had reservations on certain issues.
Rev Meshoe (ACDP) also voted in favour of the Bill with certain reservations.
The ANC unanimously voted in favour of the Bill.
The Bill was therefore passed.
The meeting was adjourned.
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