Hansard: NA: Unrevised hansard
House: National Assembly
Date of Meeting: 06 Nov 2019
No summary available.
WEDNESDAY, 06 NOVEMBER 2019
Watch Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meKCnI9baDE
PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY
The House met at 15:01.
The Deputy Speaker took the Chair and requested members to observe a moment of silence for prayers or meditation.
FILLING OF VACANCIES
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon members, before we proceed with today’s business I wish to announce that the vacancies which occurred in the National Assembly due to the resignations of Ms M O Mokause and Ms T J Mokwele had been filled by the nominations of Ms N Tafeni with effect from 25 October 2019 and Ms O M C Maotwe with effect from
31 October 2019, respectively. The members have taken an
auth in the Deputy Speaker’s office. I welcome you both, hon members, once more. [Applause.]
CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON JUSTICE AND CORRECTIONAL SERVICES ON PROMOTION OF ACCESS TO INFORMATION AMENDMENT BILL
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: I see that hon Magwanishe is supposed to be presenting that, where is he? Go ahead, sir. Just do it, the dummy was drawn so I suppose they thought it through when they drew the dummy. Do what you have to do; the Chief Whip will act after you. Do the introduction.
Dr M Q NDLOZI: No, no no ... [Interjections.]
Mr G MAGWANISHE: Hon Deputy Speaker and hon members ... [Interjections.]
Dr M Q NDLOZI: Point of order.
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: What’s your point of order?
Dr M Q NDLOZI: Deputy Speaker, the motion must be moved by the Chief Whip first. That is a bit weak, this is an important Bill, let’s do it correctly. It might come back to haunt us. So, they must move the motion, he reads and we take it from there.
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon members, no! The business of the House will proceed as agreed to. Hon Magwanishe, you will introduce the Bill, sir, and we will talk after you. Go ahead, hon member.
Mr G MAGWANISHE: Hon Chairperson ...
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Ee ... Deputy Speaker.
Mr G MAGWANISHE: Hon Deputy Speaker ... [Laughter.]
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you, sir.
Mr G MAGWANISHE: Hon members, the Portfolio Committee on Justice and Correctional Services having considered the Promotion of Access to Information Amendment Bill
introduces the report. The background to the Bill is as follows:
My Vote Counts NPC brought an application in the Western Cape Division of the High court that challenged the constitutional validity of the Promotion of Access to Information Act of 2000. On June 2018 the Constitutional Court confirmed the Western Cape High Court order.
The Constitutional Court reasoned that this is so because the exercise of the right to vote must be an informed choice and there is a vital connection between the proper exercise of the right to vote and the right of access to information, and without access to information the ability of citizens to make responsible political decisions and participate meaningfully in public life is undermined.
The court also heard that the disclosure of private funding would also help to detect whose favour political players are likely to return once elected into public office. The Constitutional Court gave Parliament 18
months to remedy the deficiency. This deadline ends on 20 December 2019.
With this deadline in mind, the committee agreed to initiate the Bill. The committee complied with the National Assembly Rule 273(1) by tabling a memorandum in the National Assembly requesting permission to initiate a Bill on 24 July 2019. On 25 July 2019 the House gave permission to proceed.
The committee called for and considered written comments and consulted with the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development. The committee held public hearings at Parliament on 17 and 18 September 2019 where the following persons and organisations made oral presentations: amaBhungane Centre for Investigative Journalism, Allan Gray, South African Human Rights Commission, Right2Know, My Vote Counts, Media Monitoring Africa, Congress of South African Trade Unions, Helen Suzman Foundation, Information Regulator and Mr James Tunbridge.
Broadly, the Bill seeks to address the Constitutional Court judgement by inserting a new section, 52(a), which deals with the recording, preservation and disclosure of records on the private funding of political parties and independent candidates.
Clause 1 of the Bill aims to amend the definition of head and private body and also insert a new definition, namely, political party in section 1 of the Public of Promotion of Access to Information Act. Clause 2 of the Bill creates an obligation on the head of a political party, which is defined to include an independent candidate, to disclose donations that have been made to a political party that exceeds the prescribed threshold in a financial year.
The head of a political party must keep records of any donations that have been made to a political party that exceeds the prescribed threshold in a financial year and the identity of persons or entities that made such donations. The prescribed threshold is the one contemplated in section 9(1)(a) of the Political Funding Act of 2018.
The records must be made available on quarterly basis as prescribed and the records must be kept for a period of five years after the records concerned have been created. Hon Deputy Speaker, we ask the House to support this Bill. [Applause.]
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: I now recognise the hon Chief Whip. What do you want us to do, madam?
The DEPUTY CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY PARTY: Hon Deputy
Speaker, it is the Deputy Chief Whip.
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Deputy Chief Whip.
The DEPUTY CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY PARTY: Thank you,
sir. I move that the report be adopted.
Declarations of vote:
Adv G BREYTENBACH: Deputy Speaker and hon members, the purpose of this Bill is to give effect to the order of invalidity made by the Western Cape Division of the High Court and confirmed by the Constitutional Court in the matter My Vote Counts v Minister of Justice in 2018.
The order of court declared the Promotion of Access to Information Act invalid to the extent of its inconsistency with the Constitution by failing to provide for the recording, preservation and reasonable disclosure of information on the private funding of political parties and independent candidates.
The Constitutional Court further ordered Parliament to amend the principle act within 18 months which period ends on 20 December this year. The Bill addresses the court judgement by inserting a new clause, 52(a).
In addition, certain definitions in the principle Act are being amended in order to include political parties and independent candidates in those entities who have a duty under the Promotion of Access to Information Act to make available information to the public.
However, unlike the case of other institutions, political parties and independent candidates will not only have a duty to keep proper record of private funders but also to make it available to the public free of charge at regular intervals. Only time will tell what impact this
legislation will have on the ability of political parties to source private funding, specifically opposition parties in a young democracy like ours.
However, an even bigger concern is the fact that the statutory body tasked with the monitoring and enforcement of obligations in terms of the Promotion of Access to Information Act is the Information Regulator which still as we speak more than five years after it was created by law, and more than three years after the appointment of the first commissioners, it is still only a paper tiger.
The bureaucratic and technical delay of the operationalisation of the Information Regulator bodes ill for the compliance with the legislation now under discussion.
According to the Human Rights Commission task to deal with the monitoring of Promotion of Access to Information Act compliance up to now has reported year in and year out that there is a general and systematic failure to comply with the existing reporting obligations.
Sadly, there is therefore a big likelihood that enforcement of the duty to make public may fall by the wayside. A lot more attention will have to be given to the functionality of the office of the Information Regulator if this piece of legislation is to ever mean anything at all.
Nevertheless, the Bill both gives effective judgement and is also constitutional and the DA supports the Bill.
Thank you. [Applause.]
Dr M Q NDLOZI: Deputy Speaker, we are also in support of the Bill and the persuasion to force all of us as political parties in a democracy to report and put in a proper record of our private funders. But there are two important things here that must be immediately put to the fore. The first one has to do with the fact that, in South Africa, majority of the time, to constitute a formidable campaign takes a lot of money.
This comes to close to saying that, there is a lot of co- modification of the very processes of the very processes of democratic elections which are seen in developed
countries. As a result, in most of the cases, the people with the most money happen to benefit because they can be able to push their favourite political parties. This is important because, in as much as money is important to constitute a political project, one’s vote has to be informed not only by who puts money, but by the greater interests of the country.
The second challenge is that, smaller political parties’ new entrance into the democratic space is often marginalised by the fact of funding. If in an economy like South Africa, where majority of the money is with the white minority, it means that smaller political parties that often want to look out for the best interest of smaller rural communities on one hand, or black people in general, don’t get majority of the funding from wider white businesses.
So, what does this mean? It means if those black people who are funding black political parties get punished by the ruling party, the existing power dimensions in society will be reproduced, and also, existing political formation in society will be reproduced without a proper
challenge. So, this is something we all must be concerned of. Therefore, the Bill is not necessarily going to disrupt these realities.
We still need new mechanisms of disarticulating the rights to vote, the elections and the entire democratic process from the weight and the power of the rich, to not only buy political actors, but also to persuade legislative directions in most of the cases, like in the case of Spectrum Development or the allocation of spectra. So, in as much we welcome these developments, as the EFF, we will be the first ones to say who the private funders are.
We are still going through a challenge even under those conditions. We are still going to have a challenge of the fact that people who actually fund small political parties; they get punished by the state. The final point is a recommendation. We want to tell Business SA in general that, perhaps it’s time that you don’t choose one horse in a political race. It’s time that they fund in the interest of supporting a democracy. [Applause.]
If they have R100 to give to political parties, they should distribute it like the Independent Electoral Commission, IEC, does, favouring everyone in the political spectra. Why? I am saying this because we see that people who put money, for example, in the CR17 campaign, are the first one to be considered when it comes to tenders and big state contracts. [Applause.]
To end that, they must not fund one person. Instead, they should put their money in the democracy fund established by the IEC, which will then be distributed to all the political parties. In that way, our democracy may function better, without the power and the greed of the capitalists who at the moment in society remain white and are just reproducing the status quo in as far as economic balance of forces are concerned.
The EFF supports the Bill. Thank you very much. [Applause.]
Prof C T MSIMANG: Hon Deputy Speaker, this Amendment Bill
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, hon members. There’s a member on the podium who wants to be listened to, please.
Prof C T MSIMANG: This Amendment Bill comes as a result of the Constitutional Court, confirming Western Cape High Court order that Promotion of Access to Information Act, as it stands, is unconstitutional in that. It did not provide for the disclosure by political parties of the funds they receive.
This Amendment Bill, in accordance with the ruling of the Constitutional Court, seeks to amend Promotion of Access to Information Act to regulate to the recordal, preservation and availability of information in respect of private funding to political parties and independent candidates, receives the full support of the IFP.
While the Bill is adequate in respect of accounting records that must be kept in respect of contributions made to party, as well as disbursements made by the party, it does not deal with funding received by individual party members when they are contesting leadership positions within a particular party. This Bill
may have been a missed opportunity in respect of the above.
But we do agree that the threshold of R100 000, in respect of which accounting officers are required to now comply with, in respect of making financial information available to the public, is reasonable as was determined by the court. We compliment the committee for their speed and efficiency in complying with the Amendment Bill within the Constitutional Court order timeframes. I thank you.
Mr S N SWART: Deputy Speaker, Deputy Speaker, the ACDP rises in support of the Promotion of Access to Information Amendment Bill and we wish to commend the perseverance of the My Vote Counts, all the way to the Constitutional Court, to obtain access for ordinary citizens to information on political party funding.
The Political Party Funding Act regulates how to fund political parties. This Promotion of Access to Information Amendment must be read with that Act, but deals with access and information in the hands of
political parties. The importance of this was emphasised by the Constitutional Court, which stated unambiguously that, I quote:
Information on private funding of political parties is essential for the effective exercise of the right to make political choices and to participate in the elections.
Submissions on the Bill contained concerns about the threshold of R100,000 which required disclosure of the donor and the amount involved. The concerns were that the Funding Act left the threshold to regulation, and additionally, it felt the threshold was too high. It also argued that the threshold should be set by regulation in the Promotion of Access to Information Amendment Act itself. The committee, however, decided to leave it as it was.
There was also an argument that the period preservation for records should be seven years and not the five years in the Amendment Bill, to be consistent with the provisions of the Companies Act. Again, the committee
kept the provisions at five years. Notwithstanding the enactment of this Promotion of Access to Information Amendment Bill, South Africans still struggle to exercise their rights to access information in the private and public domains.
We in the ACDP, look forward to the greater empowerment and capacitation, capacity being given to the information regulator. The recent focus on political party funding provides ordinary citizens a valuable opportunity to consider the broader implications and principles of transparency and accountability.
It is crucial to know who funds political parties and what influence they bring to bear on such parties, particularly those in government where lucrative state contracts are at stake. As has been said, procurement is the name; corruption is the game. The ACDP supports this Bill. I thank you.
Mr M P GALO: Deputy Speaker, Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng with Justice Freeman concurring, ordered this Parliament to promotion amend the Promotion of Access to
Information Act and take any other measure it deems appropriate to provide for the recordal, preservation and facilitation of reasonable access to information on the private funding of political parties and independent candidates within a period of 18 months.
In My Vote Counts, NPC versus the Minister of Justice and Correctional Services and others, the Committee on Justice and Correctional Services has sought to assist Parliament to comply with this order. Hon members, the Bill amending the Promotion of Access to Information Act will, as proposed by the committee regulate the recordal preservation and availability of information in respect of private funding to political parties and independent candidates.
This is a separate process to the one that was undertaken during and in the course of the passing of the Political Party Funding Act. The Constitutional Court ruling related to the inadequacy of the current Act to provide for the recordal, preservation and availability of information in respect of private funding to political parties and independent candidates.
Deputy Speaker, the Political Party Funding Act regulates both private and public funding and introduces a Multi- Party Democracy Fund to which anonymous donors may make donations to. The process that we are currently dealing with is empowering ordinary voters to access information in respect of private funding to political parties. The AIC supports this Bill. Thank you.
Declarations of vote (contd):
Adv H MOHAMED: Deputy Speaker, the ANC rise in support of the Promotion of Access to Information Amendment Bill.
The Principle Act which is the Promotion of Access to Information Act, 2000, and this Amendment Bill, are both the reflection of the ANC’s commitment to democracy, transparency and accountability.
The ANC has always understood that the core of democracy lies in the recognition of the rights of all citizens to take part in the society’s decision making. This requires that individuals are armed with the necessary information so as to make informed decisions. Coming from an undemocratic and secretive apartheid era, where access to information was restricted from the majority of South
Africans, the right to vote and to access information as contained in section 19 (32) of our Constitution respectively, are some of the achievement of democracy that we enjoy today.
In other words, the Bill under consideration today, speaks not only for the fundamental rights of access to information, but also seeks to strengthen that which lies at the very heart of democracy, that being the right to vote. As we heard earlier, the Bill is before this House today, as a result of My Vote Constitutional Court judgement. We know that last year, the Constitutional Court asserted itself and asked this House to correct what it found to be unconstitutional.
Parliament is now ceased with the duty to remedy the defects and the defects are corrected in this Amendment Bill. The Bill seeks to implement the Constitutional Court’s judgement as well as amending the Promotion of Access to Information Act, so as to regulate the recording preservation in availability of information in respect to the private funding to political parties in independent candidates.
In the judgement, the court went to great lengths in raising the dangers of secret private funding which could creep into our political and governance space to our detriment. It is also important to note that we consider this Bill today in the context of the Political Party Funding Act, passed by the fifth Parliament last year.
The ANC also wishes to express its appreciation to the public hearings that was held on the Bill, and that interested persons and bodies were all given an opportunity to be heard. This Bill now also includes, not only the declarations of monitory donations, but also sponsorships, loans made by political parties, provision of assets, etc.
So according to the Bill, the voters will now be able to access these records prior to an election. The ANC deems this Bill as necessary for many reasons. One is that it encapsulates the right to vote; it also encapsulates the right to make informed decisions when voting and as a result any measure that supports and reinforces the fundamental rights of our people is welcomed by the ANC.
The Bill will deepen democracy we believe in; usher in a new culture of transparent funding for political parties. Deputy Speaker, I allow me to end with a quote from the former President of the ANC, Comrade Oliver Tambo:
“The true facts are not always obvious. They often have to be looked for”
Indeed, an informed citizenry must ensure that they look for the true fact before they make their crosses on the ballot paper. The ANC supports the Promotion of Access to Information Amendment Bill. I thank you. [Applause.]
PROMOTION OF ACCESS TO INFORMATION AMENDMENT BILL
There was no debate.
Question put: That the Bill read a second time.
Bill accordingly read a second time.
CONSIDERATION OF BUDGETARY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATION REPORT OF PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT
There was no debate.
Dr M C C Pilane-Majake moved: That the Report be adopted.
Declarations of vote:
Mr Z N MBHELE: Deputy Speaker, the DA has always maintained that small business development is not a policy imperative that should solely be confined to a single part of government. That is our position that this department is entirely unnecessary. Rather, small business development should be championed across numerous portfolios where it has direct relevance. From Home Affairs, we should have a start up visa regime to incentivise foreign investors to bring in capital and start from enterprises to tourism were large numbers of
small make up the tourism sector such as guest houses and tour operators.
With the youth unemployment rate reaching almost 60% in the third quarter of this year, there can be no illusions, ifs or buts, about the urgency of boosting job creating growth, especially for the unskilled and those lacking work experience. Small businesses can and must be the key driver of job creation and skills developments, but they cannot do so if they are hamstrung by red tape.
That is why the DA will continue to champion the passing of the Red Tape Reduction Bill during this sixth Parliament, echoing the one that we introduced at the Private Members Bill in the fifth Parliament that can ensure a more enabling environment for small business.
South Africa need not flounder in high and growing unemployment. With the flourishing small business sector, we can catalyse an economy where labour is absorbed, skills are developed in alignment with real need in the economy and growth is generated to produce shared prosperity for all. [Applause.]
Mr T M LANGA: Deputy Speaker, the Department of Small Business must be shut down. It is an unnecessary layer of administration. This department does not help small businesses. In 2016, baba ka Duduzane and Jamnandas, promised a new Public Procurement Bill which will assist to set aside 30% of small businesses and that was a lie, it was never an intention in the first place.
The failed National Development Plan, NDP, said that small business will prioritise promoting employment in labour intensive industries and that was also a lie.
Instead, small businesses have failed under the leadership of hon Ginger. [Interjections.] Now unemployment is sitting at 29,1% and almost 10 million people willing and looking for jobs everyday cannot find work.
We made recommendations that should be at the core of the report, but were ignored. Instead, people are investing energy and time on meaningless and jobless fanfare called investment conferences. The government must instruct municipalities and state-owned companies to buy goods locally manufactured. If it is a hospital and its based
in Maritzburg, all its linen bedding and patients clothing and food for patients must come from farmers and manufacturers and the majority of them must be women and youth owned.
The majority of small businesses, especially manufacturers, can not get their products to the shelves in most privately owned. Government must start building malls to expand the shelves space for locally manufactured products. It must also build malls at municipal level.
Lastly, let’s close the department and move back its functions to the Department of Trade and Industry and ensure that small businesses are at the centre of South Africa’s industrial policy. The EFF, vehemently, rejects the Budgetary Review and Recommendation Report of Portfolio Committee on Small Business Development. [Applause.]
Prof C T MSIMANG: Hon Deputy Speaker, it was Sir Richard Branson, the owner of the Virgin Group companies, who appropriately stated that:
“All great ventures start from small and humble beginnings”.
It all begins with an idea and innovation, away of doing something better, doing it faster and more efficiently, in providing the customer with the much needed product or service. In so doing, employment opportunities are created, economic growth is generated and citizens are lifted above poverty lines.
Small business is indeed an incubator to social economic growth and yet in South Africa, it seems we are continuing to do our outmost, to stifle such entrepreneurship and business development, through lack of access to funding and to markets in general especially, in our rural areas and townships.
Big established businesses, also appear intend ... [Inaudible.] ... such entrepreneurship, perhaps seemingly afraid that they will lose market share. This mindset requires realignment in favour of small local business as dust the current thinking around financial setups that are deemed to be too risky for our banks to finance.
Small Enterprise Development Agency, SEDA, appears hopefully inadequate despite government’s assurance that funds will be provided more readily. So, what should the government be doing?
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Unfortunately your time is finished. You can’t tell us what government should do. [Laughter.]
Prof C T MSIMANG: The IFP will support the Budgetary Review and Recommendation Report of Portfolio Committee on Small Business Development. [Time expired.]
Declarations of vote (contd):
Mr W W WESSELS: Hon Deputy Speaker, this department has been a failure from the start. Firstly, small businesses are the backbone of our economy and are very important. But the fact of the matter is that all government departments should be creating a conducive environment for small businesses to strive and be developed; not only one department.
This one department does have certain incentives and certain programmes aimed at developing small businesses
and creating access to funds for those small businesses. The problem is that this department allows those programmes and funds to be misused and abused.
The Auditor-General, AG, found that there are no measures in place to prevent one beneficiary from applying more than once to these financial schemes; and that there are no measures in place to prevent government officials to also apply for these incentives, which they are not allowed to do.
So, this department is a complete failure. It’s a failure that’s failing our economy. It’s not doing what it’s supposed to do. This department should not exist; it’s a black hole for tax payers’ money and at the end of the day small businesses and those people that should be benefitting from these schemes are not benefitting, a small elite are benefitting.
The AG goes further to say that there’s noncompliance; that the department is not complying to the measures and with the legislation and regulations in terms of the incentive schemes. This is unacceptable and this
department should be shut down immediately. I thank you. [Applause.]
Rev K R J MESHOE: Deputy Speaker, the ACDP is very concerned about the minimal impact that the Department of Small Businesses, Development and Cooperatives currently has in developing and assisting small businesses; particularly as this has a direct impact on our slow- growing economy and high unemployment rate.
The department is expected to create around 90% of the
11 million jobs envisaged by the national Development Plan, NDP, by 2030. But this cannot be achieved until some employees undergo a radical change of attitude.
The department must do much more and all that it can to root out corruption and strongly deal with those who steal from well-deserving applicants for assistance and young entrepreneurs.
We agree with those who say the department has failed out people. But when looking at the recommendations and corrective action that the committee has proposed, we
agree with the recommendations, particularly those aimed at dealing expeditiously with issues of underperformance, filling vacant strategic posts and addressing the 80% failure rate of cooperatives. And those – we believe - who are responsible for financial mismanagement must face consequences. There has not been enough consequences and people had been allowed to continue stealing and looting and disadvantaging those that have applied.
So, the ACDP believes if the recommendations that have been given would be taken seriously and implemented, that there could be a change and a turnaround in the department. Thank you. [Applause.]
Mr M P GALO: Deputy Speaker, the work of the Portfolio Committee on Small Business Development is cast in great clarity and we, therefore, expect that the department will shoot through all cylinders.
The committee, having assessed the work of the department and its entities, recommended that the review of the National Small Enterprise Act of 1996 must be accelerated and tabled to the committee in line with the Department
of Small Business Development’s annual performance plan, 2019-20. And that the department should consider enhancing the role of Small Enterprise Development Agency, Seda, in the adjudication, allocation and monitoring processes of the incentive schemes.
Tshepo Dishodu from Matatiele follows the work of this Parliament and its committee with great interest. He is watching us right now. Tshepo runs a small community tourism trust in the rural-flung areas of Matatiele. The Mehloding Tourism Trust runs a hiking enterprise for the local tourists, which provides accommodation resorts for the local tourists in the Eastern Cape. His enterprise has elevated the pulse of tourism footprints in the area. It has created entrepreneurial opportunities for the local youth.
The Mehloding Tourism Trust is, however, underfunded. Structural handicaps and barriers to entry are not the only markers stifling the growth of small and medium- sized enterprises in the area.
In our view, funding is the greatest improvement to enterprise development [Time expired.] Thank you very much. The AIC supports the Bill.
Mr F JACOBS: Deputy Speaker, the ANC supports the Budget Review Recommendations, BRR, Report of the Portfolio Committee on Small Business Development.
The department and its entities’ overall performance was good as it achieved the majority of its indicators and attained unqualified audit opinion with few areas of improvement.
The portfolio committee has taken counsel from the AG to assist the department to assist on areas of underachievement; most of which have been largely attributed to vacancy rates in the higher echelons of the department.
While the two agencies, Small Enterprise Finance Agency, Sefa and Seda performed extremely well and went on to achieve unqualified clean audits.
We noted in concern the high mortality levels in small enterprises especially cooperative enterprises.
The portfolio committee is working with the department in identifying key bottlenecks such as bureaucratic red tape, challenges to access of finance and markets as well as infrastructure impediments.
The portfolio committee and the department will continue with partnerships with the private and public sector with the view to dealing with these challenges.
This BRR Report comes at a time when our unemployment rate is unacceptable at 29,1%.
We know that small business is everybody’s business and so as the ANC that is in government, we will review the procurement models and framework to address the development needs and also to look at endued ease with doing business and government efficiency and accountability.
In line with the President’s emphasis in the state of the nation address, government is committed to increasing local demand amongst other things, increase proportion of local goods and services procured by government [Time expire.] The ANC supports this BRRR. Thank you.
Mr M G E HENDRICKS: Deputy Speaker, there must be a name in the box if we are going to create the millions of jobs that this Sixth Parliament supports. You can’t spread the responsibility over too many departments over too many Ministers, there must be a name in the box, and I feel that the Sixth Parliament must give the Portfolio Committee on Small Business Development, the Minister, and the changes that are going to happen, a chance so that we can create the millions of jobs that everyone is looking forward to.
Don’t judge the present leadership from what has happened in the past. I feel that the Sixth Parliament must support the initiative of the small business development portfolio committee and its leadership.
AL JAMA-AH supports the Report. Thank you very much. [Applause.]
Motion agreed to.
Report accordingly adopted.
CONSIDERATION OF BUDGETARY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATION REPORT OF PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON MINERAL RESOURCES AND ENERGY ON VOTE 29
The DEPUTY CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY PARTY: Deputy
Speaker, I move that the report be adopted.
There was no debate.
Declaration(s) of vote:
Mrs C PHILLIPS: Thank you, hon Deputy Speaker. The Department of Mineral Resources has, despite a number of challenges, presented a credible report on its financial and performance status for the 2018-19 financial year.
The achievement of a clean audit bears testament to the fact that there has been a significant improvement in the financial and operational management of this department.
The biggest challenge faced by the department is the mineral regulations programme which has consistently underperformed on its key performance indicators. In 2017-18, the programme achieved just 59% of its objectives and although this improved to 67% in the year under review it still falls far short of where it should be. This is especially true as the programme forms the heart of the department’s mandate.
Exploration is essential for the growth of the mining industry and to this end the DA welcomes the committee recommendation that the department should explore all possible funding avenues, including approaching Treasury, to speed up the modernisation of the SA Mineral Resources Administration System, Samrad, database. This is long
overdue, but must include making it more accessible and up to date so that real time information can be utilised in mining rights applications. The department is now required to present a plan for this within the next six months.
We also welcome the recommendation that the overlapping mandates of various entities within the department ...
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order hon members! Please, you are too noisy. It’s unacceptable. [Interjections.] Thula me! [Laughter.] Go ahead, hon member.
Mrs C PHILLIPS: ... and for that matter, within the Department of Energy be reviewed. Not only has this resulted in a duplication of effort and in some cases operational paralysis, but it is very costly as well. We need a leaner department and entities that are laser- focused on delivering on their objectives. The DA is pleased to be able to support this Vote.
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The EFF? [Applause.] It’s the member’s maiden speech.
Mrs M R MOHLALA: Thank you very much, Deputy Speaker. The EFF rejects the Budget Review and Recommendation Report of the Portfolio Committee on Mineral Resources. [Interjections.] We are facing an electricity crisis ...
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order, order, hon members!
Mrs M R MOHLALA: ... because the price of coal that Eskom pays is way too high and has led to Eskom’s collapse. To normalise the situation at Eskom we must recommend that all coal suppliers must pay the price as recommended by the National Energy Regulator, Nersa. If mining companies do not want to pay the price as recommended by Nersa, the state-owned company, African Exploration Mining and Finance Corporation, must take over the mines, and supply coal to Eskom and export the surplus.
A state-owned mining company must be the one supplying the majority of coal to Eskom. We must reject the privatisation of Eskom. If we allow the privatisation of Eskom, we are practically giving away our coal mines to private companies, and in future those companies will
prioritise coal exports and we will be left without enough quality coal, as is the case right now.
Government was allowed to abuse processes of Parliament and illegally withdrew the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Amendment, MPRDA, Bill. It was wrong and we should condemn it here in Parliament. We should recommend a committee Bill to make sure that the MPRDA is back in Parliament and is passed into law. The EFF rejects this Budget Review and Recommendation Report. [Applause.]
Mr M N NXUMALO: Deputy Speaker, this department is entrusted with two critically important drivers of economic growth in South Africa as we seek to realise our goals and aspirations of a developmental state.
Mining should be a principle driver for the lifting of our people out of poverty, yet we continue to see little or no beneficiation in this industry, especially in the communities in which these mines are situated.
Rural areas and communities which are home to some of the most profitable mines in South Africa are in fact being detrimentally affected, not only in terms of not receiving adequate beneficiation, but also in respect of the environmental degradation that so very often accompanies mining operations. Section 24 of the Constitution obligates the state to ensure that everyone has the right to an environment that is not harmful to their health or their wellbeing, and to have the environment protected through reasonable legislative measures. This is not happening and communities are exposed to numerous forms of pollutions and risks to their health.
Mining companies must conduct operations within the rule of law and must ensure that the necessary rehabilitation is concluded after mining operations have ceased.
Therefore, the IFP will support this report. Thank you.
Dr W J BOSHOFF: Mnr die Adjunkspeaker, mynbou het ’n donker kant en dit het ’n blink kant. ’n Mens kan mynbou se blink kant sien wanneer dit daartoe lei dat die
ekonomie aan die gang gesit word; dat daar werk geskep word; en dat die land waar binne dit plaasvind in werklikheid van ’n mynbou land na ’n industriële land en selfs na ’n ekonomie wat deur dienste gedryf word, oorgaan. Dit is tot ’n groot mate wat ons in Suid-Afrika sien.
Maar, die donker kant van mynbou is wanneer die delfstowwe opraak, uitgeput raak en daar ’n beskadigde omgewing agtergelaat word, en gemeenskappe wat in die steek gelaat word ... gemeenskappe wat doodgewoon in duie stort. Dit is ook iets wat in Suid-Afrika gebeur.
As ons na die twee voorbeelde kyk, kan ons sê dat aan die blink kant het die mededingendheid van Suid-Afrika se beleggings land vir mynbou beleggings van 81 uit 83 lande
— wat dit twee jaar gelede was — na 56 uit 83 lande gestyg, en daarvoor moet ’n mens krediet gee dat daar ’n groote mate van sekerheid van beleid is en dat dit nou afgedwing word dat stemmings oor stakings in die geheim moet geskied; met ander woorde, dat mense nie geïntimideer kan word ...
’n AGB LID: Jy lieg nou!
Dr W J BOSHOFF: ... om te staak nie.
Aan die negatiewe kant is die omgewingsimpak daar vir almal om te sien en daar is ...
Ms A STEYN: On a point of order, Deputy Speaker.
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Just hold on; hold on. Yes, hon member?
Ms A STEYN: I’m sorry Deputy Speaker, but the member shouted loudly, “Jy lieg nou.” [You are lying.] I don’t think that’s parliamentary.
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Who’s that? [Interjections.] Who’s that?
Dr C P MULDER: Hon Deputy Speaker, it’s the hon Deputy Minister April. He can stand up and say ... [Inaudible.]
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Deputy Minister ... [Inaudible.] Hon member? Hon member, did you say that?
Mr H G APRIL: Deputy Speaker, I never said anything like that. [Interjections.]
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon member?
An HON MEMBER: Deputy Speaker, we heard him very loudly from there. So, he’s misleading the House.
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Okay, alright. Hon member, if you said it you better withdraw it now.
Mr H G APRIL: Hon Deputy Speaker, I said, jy bieg [confess] nou. Bieg ... bieg. [Interjections.]
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon members, no. Allow me to go into the Hansard. We will come back to that point and rule on it. Yes hon member?
Dr C P MULDER: Hon Deputy Speaker, may I address you before you look into the Hansard? I want you to take note
that the member first denied that he had said anything. Then he acknowledged that and now he’s saying that he said something else. He first denied it. It should say something to you.
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Okay, thanks. Alright, we will look into that here.
Dr M Q NDLOZI: Deputy Speaker, it won’t be in the Hansard because the Hansard would have meant he spoke into the microphone. There’s no way of investigating that in the Hansard.
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon member, that’s a dangerous assumption. I request you to sit down and not do that.
Dr M Q NDLOZI: It’s a fact. It’s a fact.
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: It’s a dangerous assumption. Let’s go and check the Hansard. We will come back and tell you whether we caught it or we didn’t. If we didn’t, because of what you are saying, we will tell you. [Interjections.] Hon member? Hon member? Can I just point
out to the hon member with the greatest of respect, there are cameras in the House. So just hold on. Just cool your heels. Hon member, proceed. Go ahead, sir. [Interjections.] Go ahead, hon member. You can go ahead, sir. I’m waiting for you to speak. Go ahead.
Dr W J BOSHOFF: Dankie. Nou gaan ek verder praat, en mens vat maar ’n belediging van waar dit kom. Dankie agb lid April.
In Suid-Afrika moes die departement 20 uit ’n moontlike
40 verlate myne, wat ook nie meer eienaars het nie, rehabiliteer, omdat die eienaars daarvan doodeenvoudig weggeraak het.
Wat mynbou betref, wil ek namens die VF Plus sê dat daar net een manier is om mynbou positief te maak en dit is om die blink kant bo te hou. Maar, die VF Plus kan nie hierdie verslag ondersteun nie. Baie dankie.
Mr S N SWART: Deputy Speaker, there can be no doubt that stakeholders in the mining sector face a highly
challenged industry. Corruption and policy uncertainty have in the past resulted in a drastic reduction in fixed investment in mining. However, the ACDP welcomes the improvements in this regard and the degree of policy certainty that has now been introduced in this new administration.
The mining industry also faces variable commodity prices, mounting costs and logistics issues. It is an industry that must be supported, given that the minerals sector contributes about 7% of gross value added of the country. It is also responsible for more than a quarter of foreign earnings from exports. The number of jobs that have been shed over the last five years, where the number of employed persons has almost halved in this industry, is a matter of great concern. So clearly it does need protection.
The ACDP appreciates the work done by the Mine Health and Safety Council. While certain South African mines are the deepest in the world, every life lost in our mines is tragic and every step must be taken to safeguard the
lives of mineworkers. Research and development in seismic activity must be improved and properly resourced.
We also understand from the report that there are serious issues negatively affecting miners and communities, especially in the Mpumalanga province, which require urgent attention.
Another challenge highlighted in the report is weak legislation in combating illicit trade in precious metals and diamonds. According to reports, the country is losing billions of rand in this practice and far more needs to be done in this regard.
It will be crucial for the committee to ensure that its recommendations are complied with, particularly now that two departments have been joined together. This will result in a much heavier workload. However, notwithstanding the reservations, the ACDP will support this Budget Vote. I thank you.
Mr M P GALO: Thank you very much, Deputy Speaker. The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy has its work
cut out for it. The Minister is technically running two departments, if one considers the fact that the work of the Energy Department had to be transferred to his portfolio. The Minister has therefore been thrown a spanner.
The Portfolio Committee on Mineral Resources and Energy has also worsened the Minister’s load, recommending that his department ensure the finalisation of the turnaround strategies of the Central Energy Fund.
PetroSA and Nersa ... and to carefully consider the issue of overlapping mandates between entities during the merger process, and provide the committee with the outcome. We know that PetroSA is a shadow of its former self. Its accounting and control measures have become obsolete.
We wish to commend the Minister for his stellar leadership in the mining sector. After his appointment, section 44 work stoppages have ceased with breakneck speed.
However, the Minister’s hand has been found in the cookie jar, often meddling in local disputes between the mines and local communities, like Xolobeni in Alfred Nzo, in the Eastern Cape. However, the AIC supports this report.
Mr S M KULA: Thank you, Deputy Speaker. The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy has been receiving decent audit outcome for several years. The ANC is pleased with the achievement of clean audit in the 2018/19 Financial Year, an improvement on the previous financial year unqualified audit opinion.
The strides made by the Ministry and the department in the previous financial year in terms of engaging all industry stakeholders, has borne some fruits. In spite of the mining council’s court challenge the most significant charter which has gazetted after months of consultation the 19% reduction in the number of fatalities should comfort mine workers and their families that the ANC government is committed in working towards the target of zero fatalities.
The investment of over R40 billion in mining and creation of 4 000 jobs are signs that mining is becoming a sunrise industry. Thus, responding to the call made by the President during his state of the nation address. The department has to address the challenge of corruption, maladministration and shortage of capacity particularly in underachieving mineral regulation programme. We call on the department to consider bringing to Parliament the legislation that will allow the state to intervene in mining operations that are in distress.
These have devastating impacts on workers and communities, for example; in Lilly Mine, Optimum and Aurora amongst others. The ANC expects the department to produce action plans to deal with issues raised in the Budget Review and Recommendation Report, particularly, the legislative drafting programme that stalled in the fifth Parliament. I want to say, Deputy Speaker, that this Report was unanimously adopted in the committee.
While other people come to this Parliament to grandstand, to howl and to shout empty slogans, thina (we) in the ANC
... si ya qhuba ...
... with our programme of moving South Africa forward. The ANC support this Report. [Applause.]
Motion agreed to (Economic Freedom Fighters, Democratic Alliance and Freedom Front Plus dissenting).
Report accordingly adopted.
CONSIDERATION OF BUDGETARY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATION REPORT OF PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON MINERAL RESOURCES AND ENERGY ON VOTE 26
There was no debate.
Mr B A Radebe moved: That the Report be adopted.
Declarations of vote made on behalf of the Democratic Alliance, Economic Freedom Fighters, Inkatha Freedom
Party, Freedom Front Plus, African Christian Democratic Party and African National Congress.
Declarations of vote:
Ms C PHILLIPS: Thank you, Deputy Speaker. The Democratic Alliance notes with the extreme concern that the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy yet again received a qualified audit with findings. The truth actually emerges however when one examines the departmental performance metrics. Although the department spent 99% of its allocated budget, it achieved only 32% of its objectives.
In the midst of this dark and disturbing report there are however few entities that need to be singled out as lone shining lights in what is supposed to be the department that keeps our country energised. The National Energy Regulatory of South Africa has obtained their sixth consecutive clean audit. The National Radio Active Waste Disposal Institute also received an unqualified audit opinion.
It however appears that these entities are the exception and not the rule and they have succeeded in spite of the department and not because of it. The National Solar Water Heater Project run directly by the department has missed every single target that it set for itself. It is now stalled completely with the water heater sitting in storage wrecking up huge amounts of wasteful and fruitless expenditure. In addition to its own internal challenges, the department is failing dismally with regards to its governance of the various entities it oversees.
The biggest challenge is at the central energy fund and its subsidiaries; PetroSA and the Strategic Fuel fund which is little more than a bottomless pit of expenditure with no clear strategy or plan of action to resolve the liquidity crisis and operational sustainability. PetroSA is bankrupt and [Inaudible.] all likelihood run out of feed stock for its Mossel Bay refinery next year.
However, the nuclear ... [Time expired.] The Democratic Alliance does not support this vote.
Mr D F MTHENJANE: Deputy Speaker, the EFF rejects the Budget Review and Recommendation Report of the Portfolio Committee on Mineral Resources and Energy. We do so because the Report fails to appreciate the crisis that we are facing as a country. We have made recommendations to the portfolio committee before which was adopted by this House but were all ignored and that is why we are in this crisis.
We are supposed to be making stronger recommendations to change things. We were supposed to be recommending the cancellation of purchasing of power of the agreement signed with independent power producers especially on renewable energy that are killing Eskom. It is not a matter that must be negotiated. We were supposed to be recommending the normalising of coal prices at Eskom, that which is recommended by the National Energy Regulator of South Africa. We were supposed to be calling for the arrest of people including former Ministers who were involved in illegal sale of the country’s oil that was sold at a price far much lower than its value. We know them, we saw them and they are here.
We were supposed to be recommending that PetroSA be given its rightful share in the Mossel Bay discovery as part of the step towards breaking the concentration of market in the hands of only six oil foreign-owned refineries. All these recommendations ... [Time expired.] All these recommendations are not included in the Report despite the contribution that the committee made in the fifth Parliament. The EFF rejects this budget. Thank you.
Mr M N NXUMALO: Deputy Speaker, from the outset let me state that as currently the nation’s primary supplier of energy, Eskom, should fall under its rightful department, which is this department not the Department of Public Enterprises. This department’s mandate is to ensure the secure and sustainable provision of energy in the country for its socio and economic development and to ensure that energy sector in South Africa is transformed into a sector which is sustainable, renewable and reliable energy supply becomes a norm rather than the exception.
With South Africa’s abundance of fossil fuel resources namely, coal, still yet to be exploited with our coal fire powered stations at Medupi and Kusile yet to come on
line and both with the lifespan of 50 years, we must be cognisance of the fact that our Greenhouse gas and emissions from burning fossil fuels will increase and only pick around 2030. Renewable energy sources must therefore receive greater priority and effort by government.
Point of use solar and wind power energy supplied by government should also be looked for outer lying rural areas. The energy infrastructure is here to be made available. The IFP supports the Budgetary Review and Recommendation Report, BRRR, in the hope that this department will fulfill its mandate in ensuring a cleaner and secure energy future for today’s and tomorrow’s South Africa. I thank you.
Dr W J BOSHOFF: Adjunk Speaker, die rol van goedkoop energie in Suid-Afrika se geskiedenis om Suid-Afrika van ’n mynbou na die mees gesofistikeerde ekonomie in Afrika te omskep, hoef skaars bespreek te word.
Ons het in die verlede Eskom gehad wat Suid-Afrika vinnig geindustrialiseer en ge-elektrifiseer het, waaruit die hele land en die hele ekonomie nou nog voordeel trek.
Sasol is ’n bewys van die deursettingsvermoë van Suid- Afrikaners en Koeberg van hul vernuf.
Maar dit is ’n positiewe ontwikkeling dat die nuewe geintergreerde hulpbronplan voorstel dat ons 30% hernubare krag teen 2025 moet hê. Maar as dit selfs vroeer kan gebeur is net soveel beter.
Nou, ironies genoeg, die heel goedkoopste manier vandag en die vinnigste om kragopwekking geinstalleer te kry is sonkrag. As ’n mens ’n relatiewe klein sonkragaanleg van 250KW opsit, is dit ’n belegging van, kom ons sê redelik goed bereken, R3 miljoen. Uit so ’n belegging kan die beleggers konserwatief bereken ’n opbrengs hê van
R1,5 miljoen per jaar.
Nou, wat keer dat die privaatsektor en gewone mense dit doen? Dis regulasie wat dit keer.
Op die oomblik is daar in Suid-Afrika te veel energie. ’n Mens noem dit ’n droogte. Daar is ’n geweldige droogte, vir die wat dit nog nie gesien het nie. Daardie droogte se invloed kan teengewerk word deur boere and ander mense in die landelike ekonomie toe te laat om doodgewoon die krag wat hulle kan opwek op hulle eie grond, in die netwerk in terug te voer. Wat dit keer is nie tegnies of finansiele aspekte nie, maar regulasie.
Dis waarom die FF Plus voel dat ons nie hierdie verslag kan goedkeur nie. Dankie.
Mr S N SWART: Deputy Speaker, there can be no doubt that this department is struggling and this is affirmed in the Report. The department has oversight and over energy in our nation and our country as we all know is facing unprecedented energy shortages with load shedding in the first quarter of this year by Eskom contributing to a 3,1% contraction in the GDP for that quarter.
Much of the corruption, maladministration and state capture that took place at Eskom have been highlighted in both parliamentary oversight inquiry as well as the Zondo
Commission into state capture. The ACDP looks forward to the perpetrators being locked up and ill-gotten gains been recovered. The auditor-general has for three consecutive years expressed the qualified audit opinion on this department. The basis for these finance are largely due to irregular expenditure being understated as well as material under spending of R63 million.
As far as the central energy fund is concerned, the ACDP welcomes the court application to set aside the disposal of the sale of the strategic crude oil stock. It beggars belief that this sale took place at all, placing our country at severe risk of oil shortages. We trusted that there will be a positive outcome to this court case. We also note the integrated resource plan. This is the electricity road map for the next 10 years and it is a fairly good starting point providing a framework for procurement of electricity generation.
However, the plan does not go extensively into the work that is required. We share concerns about the decommissioning of Grootvlei and Komati coal fire stations as both these stations had a highest power
availability factors in the entire Eskom fleet. This clearly needs to be reconsidered. I thank you.
Mr M G MAHLAULE: Deputy Speaker, the ANC support this Budget Review and Recommendations Report. Its recommendations affirm the significant progress made by the Ministry and the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy during the year 2018/19 to address some of the long outstanding policy matters such as the integrated resource plan. The Integrated Resource Plan, IRP, will go a long way towards creating certainty in the energy sector for both investors and consumers.
One of the most revolutionary achievements of the ANC government since 1994, is the electrification of the overwhelming majority of households in South Africa, which is a programme housed in the department. The programme has restored dignity to the majority of black South Africans who were deprived of energy by apartheid. As we look towards the future, the decisions on the most appropriate energy mix for South Africa will become a matter for political contestation. The ANC will ensure that the department has the capacity to lead the country
on this matter. Most importantly, government must ensure that the masses of our people have access to energy at a cost that supports inclusive economic growth and development.
However, the ANC is concerned that the department has received a qualified audit opinion in two consecutive years. We are also concerned about the failure by some entities to submit annual reports and lack of consequence management on matters of misconduct. The portfolio committee however, will monitor that these matters are addressed as we have agreed unanimously in our portfolio committee that we will support this Budget Review Recommendation Report. I thank you.
Motion agreed to (Democratic Alliance, Economic Freedom Fighters, Freedom Front Plus and African Christian Democratic Party dissenting).
Report accordingly adopted.
NONADHERENCE TO ASSEMBLY RULUES
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon member, before we move to the sixth order, I would like to attend to a ruling I promised to make. On Thursday, 31 October, during the question session for reply to the President, I recognised hon Mahlatsi to ask a follow-up question to the President. Before asking her follow-up question, hon Mahlatsi made the following statement and I quote:
Thank you, Deputy Speaker, thank you very much, hon President for your compendious response. Firstly, I think it is important to remind the hon Steenhuisen that you are a former general-secretary of a trade union. Therefore, how you relate to communists and trade unionists is none of his business. Quite frankly, he will not dictate to you how you should respond to them.
Hon Mahlatsi’s remarks prompted strong interjections and heckling from benches of the DA. The Chief Whip of the
Opposition rose on a point of order and submitted that Assembly Rules require members to address the Chair at all times and not to address another member directly. She stated that hon Mahlatsi spoke directly to the Leader of the Opposition.
I have now ascertained whether Ms Mahlatsi did indeed address the Leader of the Opposition directly. I took it upon myself to come back the House and rule on the point of order raised by the Chief Whip of the Opposition.
I now rule as follows: Assembly Rule 78(2)(a) states that at a sitting in the Chamber of the National Assembly, a member may only speak when the presiding officer so directs. At all other time, a member should address the Chair. Assembly Rule 1425 states that a member who asks a supplementary question may make a statement or express an opinion, but the time allowed for that first supplementary question is limited to two minutes.
It is my considered ruling that the point of order raised by the Chief Whip of the Opposition is not sustainable in terms of Rule 78(2)(a), because as she rose to put a
supplementary question, Ms Mahlantsi addressed the Deputy Speaker. Having acknowledged the Chair, Ms Mahlatsi went on to address the President. She did not address the Leader of the Opposition directly, safe to mention that the Leader of the Opposition needed to be reminded that the President is a former general-secretary of a trade union. Thus, Ms Mahlatsi spoke through the Chair to the President and did not address the Leader of the Opposition.
Furthermore, Ms Mahlatsi exercised her right to express an opinion or make a statement in accordance with Assembly Rule 1425. Rule 1425 does not prescribe the subject of the statement made as a follow-up but only the time allowed, which is two minutes. This allows members the freedom to comment on what was said during the plenary by the executive and other members, generally.
I therefore request that the Chief Whip of the Opposition withdraws her assumption and claim that the member addressed the Leader of the Opposition directly.
Mrs N W A MAZZONE: Deputy Speaker, I withdraw unconditionally and I thank you for coming back so quickly with your ruling. I consider myself duly admonished and I beg your indulgence. It was the first day of the job. [Applause.]
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon member, we appreciate your response as well.
CONSIDERATION OF BUDGETARY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATION REPORT OF PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON TRADE AND INDUSTRY
There was no debate.
Ms J Hermans moved: That the Report be adopted.
Declarations of vote:
Mr M J CUTHBERT: Hon Deputy Speaker, the DA notes with concern, the portfolio committee’s, PC, consideration of only four of the department’s entities’ annual reports and quarterly spending trends over the previous 15 months. The sheer size and scope of the department poses limitations in this regard and it is worth noting that
the PC as well as the department should take steps to work around this limitation.
An additional concern is that the budgetary review recommendation report should cover the previous financial year and six months of the new financial year. However, this was not the case, as the department was not adequately prepared to provide this important information.
In terms of financial performance, the DA is concerned about the Auditor-General’s findings that the Department of Economic Development was guilty of irregular expenditure of R214 000, and of an outstanding loss of over R1 million, as a result of noncompliance with the Economic Development Department’s, EDD, performance policy.
The DA is extremely worried about the fact that 10 senior staff members within the department are currently suspended on pay, with allegations ranging from alleged fraud to gross negligence and dishonesty. Worst of all,
there is a chief director who has been suspended for 729 days.
The DA has submitted written questions regarding the costs of these suspensions to the taxpayer and eagerly awaits a response from the Minister. The DA will continue to ensure that the department is held to account and that the role of parliamentary oversight remains at the cornerstone of our democracy. I thank you.
Mrs Y N YAKO: Chairperson, what people want is jobs. They want them now. People want access to business opportunities. People want an economic system that works for them. The biggest mistake was to combine an already failing department under an incompetent Minister with an even bigger department with the same Minister.
The EFF rejects this report, as it fails to deal decisively with building a sustainable industrial development strategy based on firstly, the import substitution of ... [Inaudible.]... of domestic investment with labour-intensive development that reduces high levels of unemployment; secondly, a South Africa
with a microeconomic efficiency; thirdly, a department that monitors government expenditure on locally produced goods.
We see the lack of will from the department in dealing with key entities such as the South African Bureau of Standards, SABS, and the National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications, NRCS. In the NRCS, critical vacancies have been left vacant for almost five years, an entity that is vital in making sure that the quality of goods in South Africa is up to standard. The Department of Trade and Industry and the Department: Economic Development have also failed to ensure that women are properly represented, be it in their funding structure or their employment demographics. NRCS, for example, boast of a 44% women employment, which goes against a measure, which should be at least a 50% of women in structures.
The fact that we have to keep highlighting the inequalities in this country, especially when black women are the most marginalised and bear the brunt of economic inequality in 2019, is unacceptable.
The department has failed to put in place special economic zones in rural areas, and instead, has chosen easy spaces that will act as if they are stimulating the growth of SMMEs, when the reality is that they are far removed from the people who need them.
Sinabantu eQonce, eGccuwa, eMthatha, eCofimvaba, eQwaQwa, eThaba Nchu ...
... but these SOEs are never there. They are put far away from people. There should be an aggressive stimulation in the economy in rural South Africa, especially for poor provinces such as the Eastern Cape and Limpopo.
Therefore, the EFF rejects this budgetary review and recommendation report.
INKOSI R N CEBEKHULU: House Chairperson, as outlined in the report of one of the key approaches of the Department of Trade and Industry is to contribute towards inclusive economic growth and job creation. Inclusive economic growth and job creation are the key components to address
the triple challenges of poverty, inequality and unemployment.
Unfortunately, the latest quarterly labour force survey of 29 October 2019 has shown an increase in unemployment in South Africa, breaking new unemployment records. If you have a closer look at our gross domestic product, we see that manufacturing production decreased by 1,8% in August 2019, compared to the same in 2018.
The Minister of Finance, in his medium-term Budget Speech highlighted the fact that we, as the nation, subsidise the wealthy for their transport and forget about those who need it the most. We believe that subsidisation cannot just be dished out if it yields no benefits to the growth of our economy; rather it needs to be strategically spent in order to generate activity that grows our economy. In other words, subsidisation must be seen as an investment into the economy and job creation.
Therefore, the Department of Trade and Industry must ensure that it strategically spends its resources on the creation of an inclusive and enabling environment that
drives industrial development. The department should take special note in this regard to the committee recommendation to, amongst others, increase its allocation for incentive programmes, in order to facilitate industrialisation and increase job creation.
Strategic investment must be ... The IFP supports the report. Thank you. [Time expired.]
Mr F J MULDER: House Chair, the Department of Trade and Industry is primarily responsible for developing an enabling environment that drives strategic, regional and international trade and that attracts direct investment for sustainable jobs. It is further important to realise that the department cannot function in isolation and its ability to deliver is largely influenced by the general political climate, other departments and investment trust in South Africa.
Since 1994, however, the South African government has legislated the country into bankruptcy, without being able to enforce these laws, while poor governance,
corruption and state capture had a detrimental effect on the economy.
Die Departement van Handel en Nywerheid sal nie sy doelwitte behaal, solank daar wetgewing en regulasies bestaan wat op ideologie, in plaas van gesonde logiese sakebeginsels gebaseer is nie. Die instelling van die suikerbelasting deur die voormalige Minister van Gesondheid het reeds tot die verlies van duisende werksgeleenthede gelei en die plaaslike suikerbedryf onder groot druk geplaas, terwyl die Wysigingswet op Skuldverligting die hele kridietbedryf onder groot druk plaas en ook groot beleggingswantroue in die sektor veroorsaak.
The future of the local cement industry has been jeopardised by substandard products, largely imported from Vietnam, and the International Trade Administration Commission, Itac, should consider import tariffs on an urgent basis.
The National Regulator for Compulsory Specification is under administration, while it is supposed to be a key player in protecting public health, safety standard and furthermore, the South African Bureau of Standards, SABS, has a turnaround time of more than 400 days in certain cases.
Een van die mislukte steunpilare van die departement is die wyse waarop BBBEE [breë-basis swart ekonomiese bemagtiging] geimplimenteer is. Dit het reeds in sy doel gefaal. Dit het niks meer as gerieflike retoriek nie geword. Die VF Plus ondersteun nie die verslag nie.
Dankie. [Tyd verstreke.]
Mr W M THRING: Hon Chair, after the 2019 elections, the South African President announced the reconfiguration of the government to promote coherence, better co-ordination and to improve efficiency. This included the merger between the Ministries of Trade and Industry and of Economic Development with key policy priorities that include inclusive economic growth and job creation to address our multiple challenges.
After a Medium-Term Budget Statement Policy by Finance Minister, Mr Tito Mboweni, which resulted in the rand losing 3 to 4% of its value overnight and Moody’s downgrading our economy to just one notch above junk status, there has never been a more important time for these two departments now merged into one to rise to the challenge of addressing economic growth and job creation. In this light, the ACDP during the Budget Review and Recommendations Reports, BRRR, process made the following recommendations: One, beneficiation can reduce unemployment and hence the department must itemise all possibilities where beneficiation can take place and set timelines incorporating monetary systems with a view to implement beneficiation in the short, medium and long term. In the spirit of improving economic growth and creating jobs, the department must seek to create partnerships with education and the private sectors with the view to crafting curriculums gear to developing skills much needed in the private and public sector.
Of the 25 years of democracy where many in South Africa fought against racism, classism and tribalism, the battle to achieve social cohesion has not been one. Hence, the
ACDP recommends that all racial barriers policies which still use the apartheid classification of African, Coloured, Indian and White be scrapped. The broad-based black economic empowerment, BBBEE, has failed to reduce our Gini coefficient and BBBEE must be scrapped. Let’s look at importing or protecting our poultry industry from imports which was dumped in South Africa. I thank you. [Time expired.]
Mr D M NKOSI: Hon House Chairperson, the ANC asked the House to support the report. The committee applauds the clean audit achieved by the Department of Economic Development and Trade and Industry as well as 15 of its
17 entities. The committee remains concerned about the challenges faced by the National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications, NRCS, and the SA Bureau of Standards, SABS, giving the important role they play in the South African economy.
The committee will closely monitors the implementation of their turnaround strategy, informed by deliberations of the committee recommends that the House requests the Minister of Trade and Industry to consider: One, engaging
the Minister of Finance to co-ordinate and monitoring and enforcement of local content requirement as underpinned by the Preferential Public Procurement Framework Act; two, increasing the allocation of incentive programme to facilitate deeper industrialisation investment, industrial decentralisation and increase job opportunities; three, submitting the final report of the forensic investigation undertaken by the NRCS and the SABS once these are completed; four, increasing the government grant to the SABS to facilitate small, medium and micro enterprises support and local content verification on the outer year of the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework; and five, assist the NRCS with its procurement process to implement the information and communication technology modernisation project. I thank you.
Question put: That the Report be adopted.
Motion agreed to (Democratic Alliance, Economic Freedom Fighters, Freedom Front Plus and African Christian Democratic Party dissenting).
Report accordingly adopted.
CONSIDERATION OF BUDGETARY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATION REPORT OF PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON TOURISM
There was no debate.
Declarations of vote made on behalf of the Democratic Alliance, Economic Freedom Fighters, Inkatha Freedom Party, Freedom Front Plus, African Christian Democratic Party, African Independent Congress and African National Congress.
The CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY (Ms J Hermans): Hon House Chair, I move:
That the Report be adopted.
Declaration(s) of vote:
Mr M S F DE FREITAS: Madam House Chair, the latest data released by the Statistic SA confirmed that the tourism sector is not growing at its full potential and is, in fact, regressing. There are number of reasons for this.
This includes, but not limited to the current visa regime and visa processing issues and safety and security concerns. The statistics confirmed that fewer international tourists are visiting our shores, be it from African countries or other part of the world.
Countries specifically targeted by Tourism South Africa have shown a dramatic decrease in tourists to our country. This includes China, which has shown a decrease by 10%. German tourists have traditionally contributed high numbers of visitors to our shores, but those have decreased by 6,5%. Tourists from other African countries have also cumulatively to dropped by 1,4%. For this statistics to change, the Department of Tourism needs to do things differently as a start to this co-ordinating more aggressively and tightly with other departments such as Home Affairs and Police as well as entities such as SA National Parks, Sanparks. The time for government to partner with entities to work in silos is over.
In addition, the department needs to resolve the dispute with the chief executive officer, CEO, of Tourism South Africa. Government needs to redirect its budget to change
the image of South Africa. Activities such as Rugby World Cup victory this weekend should be capitalised on and piggy-banked on. To date government is allowing such opportunities to be lost. This must change so that the number of international tourists to our shores can increase. This would have knock-on affect on growing jobs and our economy. I thank you.
Mr P G MOTEKA: Hon Chairperson, the EFF is here to reject this report. This sector still remains the highly constricted sector controlled by few white people and excludes the majority of our people. It is white people who own lodges, nature reserves and who are in control and even state-owned nature reserves. It is these people who benefit from the tourism. The Department of Tourism has failed dramatically to change a nature of tourism in this country.
Tourists still come to the same destinations controlled by the old club boys. We have not been able to diversify our tourists’ attraction to the rest of the country.
Tourists still comes mainly to three provinces which are Western Cape, Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal. We have immersed
potential to diversify this sector to other provinces such as Eastern Cape, Limpopo and Mpumalanga, for those who are interested in historical and heritage tourism. We have not been able to do so because the very nature of South African economy favours those who have accumulated property in the past.
Further, there are no consequences for those who are racist in transformation in this country. They are aided by the government in excluding black people from the industry. To be part of the ocean economy, one must have R1,5 million in his bank account. The overall black participation is at less than 48% and the black women ownership is at less than 10%. Black participants are only found in the poorest provinces which are Limpopo and Mpumalanga. Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng are mainly dominated by the white people. We are against the antitransformed tourism. [Time expired.]
Mr K P SITHOLE: Hon House Chairperson, when the Inkatha Freedom Party voted on the budget at the beginning of this Parliament, we focused on issues of safety and water security that affect the tourism industry. To date, we
see that there has been little done to achieve security in this regard. Now, we find the report that the department has not submitted the full extent of its fruitless and wasteful expenditure as required by the Public Finance Management Act in section 43(1). One must question how serious this department is - under the leadership of the current Minister. This report is vitally in assessing the true sad state of the department and work on turnaround strategy in the interest of the state.
The potentials of this department were well-known in 2018, these sectors contributed to 1,5 million jobs and R425,8 billion contributed to the economy. Yet, there are figures which cannot be improved upon the unlocked more jobs and higher revenue for South Africa. The committee made two of all remarkable recommendations: that the Minister of Finance should work with the department to reprioritise the budget in order to further unlock the contribution that tourism makes the gross domestic product, GDP, and that the Minister of Tourism develop strategy plans which include the participations and privatisation of villages, townships and small towns.
The IFP proposes that the budget be directed and spent on programme that are targeted for agritourism to support food security and tourism within the rural areas. Tourism in the rural areas needs to be met with enough infrastructures such as roads, formally common areas of trading and most importantly, water infrastructure. The department must also focus on training of people in the rural areas. The IFP supports the BRRR. [Time expired.]
Mr I M GROENEWALD: Hon House Chair, tourism is one of South Africa’s leading industries. The department’s role is observed ... [Inaudible.] ... policy and strategic frameworks for the growth of tourism. With the decline in tourism arrivals, one must have a look at the factors that cause such declines. One of the great factors is crime in our country: a Prestige Hotel where 15 men held up guests with firearms, a stabbing to death of a 44- year-old tourist in Table Mountain National Park, the stabbing of a 33-year-old tourist that was three months pregnant and her husband while they were peacefully sleeping in the Eastern Cape, theft of property at reserves and even tourists being followed from airports just to rob them of their personal belongings at
gunpoint, hijackings, violent service delivery protests and, the latest, where a rock climber was shot to death.
To address the problem of crime is to see the big picture where the department cannot work in silos. For a healthy tourism environment you need, firstly, grave and responsible government, functional local government, a clean environment and action against crime, with a healthy economy that favours entrepreneurship. The department must not overlook policy that appeals to all government departments by which success in tourism will only be established by the united government all giving effect to helping the tourism market back to health.
We need a government that does not talk or campaign for the next election. We need a responsible government that is willing to take unpopular decisions, as leaders should do. Our ANC government only wants to please their voters, and is a party that take popular decisions, thereby creating unrealistic policies while there is proof that they do not work. With a greater government even a tourism industry can show significant growth, but only
with a real leadership and great political will in government.
Suid-Afrika is een van die gesogste teorismebestemmings. Suid-Afrika kan toeriste ’n unieke stukkie van die wêreld bied en doen ’n beroep op die Minister om ’n groter prentjie van samewerkende departemente te kry, om so ook by te dra tot een van die markte wat ’n groot rol in werkskepping en ekonomiese vooruitgang in Suid-Afrika speel. Hiermee keur die VF Plus die verslag af.
Me M E SUKERS: Voorsitter, die toerisme sektor speel ’n baie belangrike rol in die ekonomie van ons land. Die sektor bevat enorme moontlikhede vir ekonomiese transformasie en werkskepping deur programme wat veral vroue en jongmense teiken.
Daarom verwelkom die ACDP die aanbevelings van die komitee.
Tourism is a trigger for economic growth in the key areas that can transform the lived reality of those on the fringes of the economy. It gives easy access to skills development and new business development. It is a sector that carries our diverse culture and unique story to those who dare to come in spite of the challenges or what they may have heard about us.
Dit is hoekom ons vandag die departement aanmoedig om deur ’n multisektoriese benadering die Suid-Afrika storie na die buiteland te vat.
We must ensure that our strategies to combat crime is not only implemented but shared with the world.
Ons is ’n nasie wat nie stil sit in ons probleme nie. Ons takel ons probleme en ons veg vir die toekoms. En dit is wat die wêreld wil hoor.
We have a great story. The boys in green and gold promoted the strength of the South African brand. The department must leverage on this great story so that the realities that we face, such as crime and joblessness, by our collective efforts, does not define our country’s narrative abroad.
The department must tackle the issues that prevent growth of new entrance into the market, especially small business development for women, youth and those living with disabilities in this sector.
This department must make a genuine effort to tackle the recommendations put forward by this committee because our brand, South Africa, has great value, and we must believe and promote that. I thank you.
Mr M P GALO: House Chair, the recommendations made by the committee are borne out of the role that the tourism sector is expected to exert as a catalyst for economic growth. While the committee is not satisfied with the financial and nonfinancial performance of the department and SA Tourism for the 2018-19 financial year, the
department of Tourism as the prime of the South African tourism market has to work closely with Brand SA, SA Tourism, Tourism Grading Council of South Africa, Brand Experience and Visitors Experience teams to bolster the tourism market.
All these role players, to be fair, have made great strides in their various roles made great strides to contribute to South Africa as the most reliable appealing resilient and competitive destination for tourism. The rejections by the National Treasury of the committee’s proposals for a tourism-funding model for local government through determining a percentage of the budget that could be ringfenced for tourism in the Division of Revenue allocations is deeply regrettable.
Hon members, we need tirelessly to address Visa challenges, especially the visa processing challenges in India, China, New Zealand and Nigeria. Government must deal with issues of policy certainty, water security, wildlife protection and security. We are appalled by the state of funding of the small community tourism enterprises. [Time expired.] Thank you.
Ms S T XEGO: Hon Chairperson, the ANC fully supports the BRR report because there is consensus in South Africa that tourism has a potential to create more jobs and contribute to inclusive economic growth. Our national target was articulated by the President in his state of the nation address. It is to double international tourist arrivals to 21 million by 2030.
The target can only be achieved through the renewal of the country’s brand and a significant focus on the new market, such as China, India and the rest of the continent. Working together with other portfolio committees such as Home Affairs and the Police, we must progressively address all visa-related issues and significantly improve the safety and security of South Africans and our visitors.
The ANC will ensure that the committee uses its power of oversight over the department and SA Tourism to drive more equitable marketing of tourist destinations in small towns, villages and townships, while at the same time transforming and strengthening the existing tourism infrastructure.
The ANC is pleased with the achievement of service delivery, targets and financial performance of the department. While we are concerned about the slow pace of some of the findings of the Auditor-General on SA Tourism, have been addressed.
The committee will be monitoring adherence of the Auditor-General’s recommendation through quarterly report and oversight. The ANC supports this recommendation and review report. Thank you. [Applause.]
Question put: On the motion that the report be adopted.
There were objections.
[BELLS RUNG FOR THREE MINUTES.]
[TAKE IN FROM MINUTES.]
CONSIDERATION OF BUDGETARY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATION REPORT OF PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT ON RURAL DEVELOPMENT AND LAND REFORM - VOTE 39
CONSIDERATION OF BUDGETARY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATION REPORT OF PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT ON AGRICULTURE - VOTE 24
There was no debate.
Dr M C C PILANE-MAJAKE: moved that the Reports be adopted.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon members, there is too much movement. Will you please take your seats?
Declarations of vote:
Ms B M VAN MINNEN: House Chair, this is the department responsible for the hot topic of land reform in South Africa. It has a mandate of creating and maintaining an equitable and sustainable land dispensation. It must act as a catalyst in rural development to ensure sustainable rural livelihoods, decent work and continued social and economic advancement of South Africans. But, this department is spectacularly failing in its mandate.
En dit is geen wonder dat hierdie department faal nie. Korrupsie en wanadministrasie is aan die orde van die dag. Ek haal aan uit ons verslag: ...
... “Fraud and corruptions pose a risk to successful land reform and rural development.”
Die department strompel van die een projek na die ander sonder behoorlike beplanning en beleid in plek. Dit is so erg dat die department nou basies deur ons land se howe
bestuur word, nadat hul die een hofsaak na die ander verloor.
’n Tipiese voorbeeld van hierdie wanfunksie binne die department kan gesien word in die Rakgase-saak, waar die department nou deur die howe gedwing word om staatsgrond aan ’n swart boer the verkoop, dit omdat die staat se eie beleidvoorstel – dat grond na vyf jaar aan boere beskikbaar gestel kan word – nie gevolg word nie.
Na al die moeite om hof toe te gaan het die departement nou nog nie aan Mnr Rakgase’n koopkontrak gegee nie.
Die hof het verder gevra dat ’n gedeelte van die departement deur’n administrateur bestuur word. Beleidsonsekerheid en verandering van planne het ons nou gedwing om te kyk na die verandering van ons land se Grondwet. Daar is niks fout met ons Grondwet nie. Ruk die departemente van grondhervorming en landbou reg.
It has been reported or confirmed today that there is a new outbreak of Foot-and-mouth disease in the country.
This after the Agricultural Research Council had failed to complete their research facilities for Foot-and-mouth disease.
Die droogte het ook ’n erge uitwerking op ons land, en ons vra die departement om die droogte as ’n ramp te verklaar. Dankie. [Tyd verstreke.]
Mr M K MONTWEDI: House Chair, despite defining and false euphoria about nonracial unity and various attempts to paint a picture of South Africa as a nation. The reality of the matter is that we are yet to be a nation. We are as divided as ever before of the pervasive colonial and apartheid denialism in this country.
At the centre of it all, is the failure of this government to resolve the colonial and apartheid question on land dispossession. Twenty-five years after attaining political freedom, whites still own over 70% of the land and Africans just less than 4%.
The various land reform interventions made since 1994 have drastically failed. Rather, beneficiaries of colonial and apartheid theft have benefitted the most from the post-1994 land reform experiment. The illegitimate owners of MalaMala Game Reserve were gifted R1 billion and are still benefiting from the partnership arrangement there.
Billions of rand have been spent on buying stolen land from white settlers since 1994 and we have not seen the same amount of money invested in ensuring that the black beneficiaries of land are supported,
In addition, the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries has been paying lip service to the development of black farmers for a while. There is no coherent plan to support new entrants to the sector and those already in it are struggling because the government’s support comes in an unco-ordinated manner.
There is over R150 million that was meant for transforming the agricultural sector that is sitting with the Land Bank since 2009 meant for the AgriBEE agreement.
None of this money has been used for the development of black farmers. As the EFF, we reject this Budgetary Review and Recommendation Report, BRRR.
Inkosi R N CEBEKHULU: House Chairperson, the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform have been neglecting the smallholder farmers as well as subsistence farmers.
The department does not sufficiently monitor how these farmers have progressed through the assistance given to them. They seemingly have been left out in the cold.
These farmers occupy an area in the industry of vulnerability. They are expected to maximise production as well as sustain employment as the previous owners did. The use of mentors and strategic matters has also not paid the intended dividends.
We see that much of the funds allocated for farmers to use for development are diverted to the pockets of the mentors and strategic partners. This issue has an obviously negative on this vulnerable group’s ability to run a farm successfully.
Consequently, this has led to the perception that land reform farmers are incompetent and failures. We find that the department has also been leasing farms to people without the proper verification system in place to assess their ability and knowledge of the farming industry.
Together with short leasing periods and the lack of due diligence we often see land reform projects failing. The failure of land reform and to ensure the success of smallholder farmers affects South Africa’s food security.
Our Constitution enshrines the right to food security and emphasises the duty of the state to formulate legislation and measures to achieve the realisation of these progressive rights.
The right to food is not limited to one group of people but for everyone regardless of their dispossession and must be available, accessible and adequate. South Africa’s own National Development Plan, NDP, and global Sustainable Development Goals both prioritise the realisation of proper food security and to end hunger. [Time expired.]
Kunjalo siwawuxhasa umbiko, Sihlalo. Ngiyabonga.
Me T BREEDT: Voorsitter, hierdie is twee uiters belangrike departemente wat nou saamgevoeg is, maar die prentjie is duister as die Minister nie daarin kan slaag om hulle om te keer nie.
Die oudituitkomste skets ’n prentjie van verswakking in beide die voormalige Departement van Landbou, Bosbou en Visserye, sowel as die departement van Grondhervorming en Landelike Ontwikkeling, asook hul entiteite.
Suid-Afrika se hoofbouers – ons boere, wit en swart – word uitgelewer aan uiterse klimaatveranderinge en mislukte departementele projekte wat niemand ophef of help nie. Komersiële landbouers moet ondertsteun en beskerm word, om sodoende nodige werksgeleenthede te bou en selfs uit te brei, volhoubare landelike ekonomië te skep, en voedselsekerheid te bevestig.
Die fokus van die departement bly egter op gefaalde, halfgebakte projekte soos agriparke wat op papier pragtig lyk, maar in die praktyk onuitvoerbaar was en misluk het.
Die komitee het met mooi prentjies en beloftes suksesvolle agriparke voorsien, maar op nadere inspeksie het dit geblyk of hierdie prentjies nie die een-honderd persent korrekte waarheid was nie.
Die ophef van swart boere tot op komersiële vlak slaag nie as gevolg van sulke mislukte projekte nie. Tans het meer as 20% van huishoudings in Suid-Afrika nie voldoende toegang tot voedsel nie, en daarom moet ons voedselsekerheid beskerm deur komersiële landbou te stimuleer en te ontwikkel.
Die nuwe saamgevoegde departemente het nodig om die skakelinge tussen nasionale, provinsiale en munisipale vlak te bewerkstelling om sodoende te voorsien dat projekte nie tussen die krake val en ’n teelaarde vir korrupsie word nie.
Dit is nodig om te verseker dat voorsieningskettingbestuurprosesse korrek funksioneer, nakoming van wetgewing gehoorsaam word en, mees belangrik, die politieke wil daar is om dinge te verander en projekte suksesvol te maak.
Groot drome kan gedroom word, maar as die regte en soms ongewilde besluite nie geneem word nie, sal Suid-Afrika se mense altyd honger ly. Dankie.
Mr W M THRING: House Chair, in considering this report the ACDP is keenly aware that the mandate of the committees to consider, amend and or initiate legislation specific to or impacts on agriculture, land reform and rural development; monitor and oversee the activities and performance of the Ministry and the former Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and its entities.
The department was appropriated R7,7 billion in the financial year under review, a significant increase from the R6,7 billion that was appropriated in the 2017-18 financial year. As a result of underexpenditure in 2018-
19, the department surrendered R170 million to the National Treasury’s National Revenue Fund.
The ACDP finds this alarming particularly when land claims have not been settled. When millions of South Africans are eagerly awaiting to become first-time land and homeowners and when thousands of potential farmers are waiting for assistance so that they can play a role in food security and become productive members of our bleeding economy. The department surrenders a
R170 million to the National Treasury’s National Revenue Fund.
With unemployment at the highest in decades, a budget deficit climbing to 6% of GDP, debt-to-GDP set to break 70% by 2022-23, junk status that would raise the cost of servicing our debt staring us in the face, a Gini coefficient that is making us the most unequal nation in the world.
We must come to the realisation that amending the Constitution to provide for land expropriation without compensation is not the panacea to the land question but
possibly the final straw that breaks the economy’s back. I thank you.
Mr L M NTSHAYISA: House Chair, it is good and proper that I speak before the Inkosi [Chief] so that I can pave the way. We are all looking forward to the amendment of Section 25 and also waiting for the scientific and smart system that is going to be used when expropriating land without compensation.
The mandate and priorities of this department should be in line and are in line with the National Development Plan. Land reform should include the rural areas and also create jobs and alleviate poverty which is one of the triple challenges facing our country.
Therefore, now, we should provide food security because our people have long been living in poverty. So it is important now that you should provide food security. Of course, the people in the land now should be given proper skills so they know exactly what is it they can do with the land that is being given to them.
The mission and vision of this department is that, “vibrant, equitable and sustainable rural communities.” This mission now must be accomplished for the purpose of having our people living in a better place in their land.
Land ownership is very crucial because it brings dignity to the people of Africa more especially those that were previously disadvantaged. So the partnership with all sectors of society will bring about the integrated development and the social cohesion that is always spoken about. We support this report. Thank you very much.
Mr Z M D MANDELA: House Chair, the ANC in its Ready to Govern: Policy guidelines states that I quote:
The state must help new farmers to farm their land provide them with training and extension work and further provide them with financial aid, subsidies to promote good farming practices.
This emphasis on adequate funding is to ensure the success of all programmes and entities in order to boost productivity and exports. Land hunger has reached a
crisis point and therefore our Land Reform programme is about redressing historical injustices and unlocking growth for socioeconomic transformation. The recommendation around policy gaps and inefficiencies in departmental performance and monitoring of its entities must be strengthen accordingly. All outstanding land, restitution claims must be settled within the legal provisions. We commend the successful work of the department and further call for the intensification and rollout to areas of most impoverished and land hunger and unemployment. The transformation of the rural landscape carries with it a renewed hope that we indeed can create and build a South Africa with a better quality for life for all by removing the vestiges of colonialism and apartheid.
House Chairperson on behalf of the ANC, I hereby support the BRRR of the Portfolio Committee of Vote 24 Agriculture and Vote 39 of Land Reform and Rural Development. I thank you.
MODULASETULO WA NGWAKO (Moh M G Boroto): Ngwana a phoša dira ga a bolawe. Sefepisegolo sa mokgatlo wo mogolo, naa re dirang ka pego?
Dr M C C PILANE-MAJAKE ON BEHALF OF THE CHIEF WHIP OF THE
MAJORITY PARTY: House Chairperson, I moved that the Reports be adopted.
CONSIDERATION OF BUDGETARY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATION REPORT OF PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT - RURAL DEVELOPMENT AND LAND REFORM: VOTE 39
Question put: That the Report on Rural Development and Land Reform - Vote 39 be agreed to.
The House divided.
AYES - 136: Adams, R C; Adoons, N G; April, H G; Beukes, A J;Bilankulu, J H; Bilankulu, N K; Buthelezi, E M; Capa, N; Cebekhulu, RN; Chabane, M S; Dhlomo, S M; Dikgale, M
C; Direko, D R; Dirks, M A; Dlakude, D E; Dlamini, D D; Dunjwa, M L; Dyantyi, P P; Dyantyi, Q R; Frolick, C T; Galo, M P; Gantsho, N; Gomba, M M; Gumbu, T T; Gumede, S N; Gungubele, M; Hermans, J; Hermans, N L; Hlengwa, M D; Jacobs, F; James, T H; Khalipha, T D; Kibi, M T; Kubheka, N J; Kula, S M; Legwase, T I; Letsie, W T; Lubengo, M L; Luzipo, S; Maake, J J; Mabe, B P; Mabiletsa, M D; Magaxa, K E; Mahlatsi, K D; Mahlaule, M G; Mahlo, N P; Mahumapelo, S O R; Majozi, Z; Makhubela-Mashele, L S; Malatji, T ; Malinga, V T; Malomane, V P; Mananiso, J S; Mandela, Z M D; Maneli, B M; Manganye, J ; Mangcu, L N; Mapulane, M P; Mashego, M R; Masiko, F A; Masondo, T S; Maswanganyi, M J; Mbuyane, S H; Mc Donald, L E; Mchunu, T V B; Mdabe, S W; Mgweba, T ; Mjobo, L N; Mkhatshwa, N T; Mkhwanazi, J C N; Mlenzana, Z; Mmutle, T N; Moatshe, R M; Modise, P M P; Mofokeng, J M; Mohamed, H; Molala, L E; Molekwa, M A; Moroatshehla, P R; Morolong, I K; Motaung, A; Motaung, N E; Mpanza, T S; Mpumza, G G; Msimang, C T; Mthembu, A H; Munyai, T B; Mvana, N Q; Newhoudt-Druchen, W S; Ngcobo, S L; Ngwezi, X; Nkosi, B S; Nkosi, D M; Nontsele, M ; Nqola, X; Ntobongwana, N; Ntombela, M L D; Ntshayisa, L M; Ntuli, M M; Nxumalo, M N; Papo, A H M; Patrein, S; Peacock, N P; Peter, Z J; Peters, E D;
Pilane-Majake, M C C; Qayiso, X S; Radebe, B A; Ramadwa, M M; Seabi, A M; Semenya, M R; Seoposengwe, C; Shabalala, L F; Sibiya, D P; Sihlwayi, N N; Singh, N; Sithole, K P; Siwela, E K; Siwela, V S; Skosana, G J; Somyo, S S; Tlhape, M M E; Tlou, M M; Tolashe, G N; Tongwane, T M A; Tseke, G K; Tseki, M A; Tshwete, B; Van Der Merwe, L L; Xaba, V C; Xasa, F D; Xego, S T; Yabo, B S; Zibula, B T; Zulu, L D; Zungu, T R M.
NOES - 90: Arries, L H; Bagraim, M; Basson, L J; Bergman, D; Boshoff, W J; Breedt, T; Brink, C; Cachalia, G K Y; Ceza, K; Chabangu, M M; Chirwa, N N; Clarke, M O; Cuthbert, M J; De Villiers, J N; Dlamini, M M; Faber, W F; Gardee, G A; Gondwe, M M; Groenewald, I M; Groenewald, P J; Gwarube, S; Hicklin, M B; Hinana, N E; Hunsinger, C H H; Ismail, H ; Jordaan, H; Joseph, D; Keetse, P P; Khawula, M S; King, C V; Komane, R N; Kopane, S P; Langa, T M; Mabhena, T B; Mabika, M S; Mackenzie, C; Madlingozi, B S; Mafanya, W T I; Majola, T R; Maotwe, O M C; Marais, E J; Masango, B S ; Masipa, N P; Mazzone, N W A; Mbhele, Z N; Mc Gluwa, J J; Mey, P ; Mkhaliphi, H O; Mohlala, M R; Mokgotho, S M; Montwedi, M K; Moteka, P G; Motsepe, C C S; Mpambo-Sibhukwana, T G; Mphithi, L; Msane, T P;
Mthenjane, D F; Mulaudzi, T E; Mulder, C P; Mulder, F J; Ndlozi, M Q; Ngcobo, S; Ngwenya, D B; Nodada, B B; Opperman, G ; Paulsen, M N; Phillips, C; Schreiber, L A; Seitlholo, I S; Sharif, N K; Shembeni, H A; Siwisa, A M; Sonti, N P; Spies, E R J; Steyn, A; Sukers, M E; Swart, S N; Tarabella Marchesi, N I; Tafeni, N; Terblanche, O S; Thembekwayo, S S; Thring, W M; Tito, L F; Van Dyk, V; Van Staden, P A; Walters, T C R; Weber, A M M; Wessels, W W; Whitfield, A G; Yako, Y N.
Question agreed to.
Report on Rural Development and Land Reform (Vote 39) accordingly adopted.
CONSIDERATION OF BUDGETARY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATION REPORT OF PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT - AGRICULTURE: VOTE 24
There was no debate.
Question Put: That the Report on Agriculture - Vote 24 be agreed to.
Report on Agriculture - Vote 24 accordingly adopted (Democratic Alliance, Economic Freedom Fighters, African Christian Democratic Party and Freedom Front Plus dissenting).
ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT, EPA, BETWEEN THE SOUTHERN AFRICAN CUSTOMS UNION AND MOZAMBIQUE, SACUM, AND THE UNITED KINGDOM, UK
(Consideration of request for approval by Parliament)
Mr D M NKOSI: Hon House Chairperson, I rise to introduce the Portfolio Committee of Trade and Industry’s Report on its consideration of the Economic Partnership Agreement, EPA, between the Southern African Customs Union and Mozambique, Sacum, and the United Kingdom, of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The Portfolio Committee of Trade and Industry, having considered the request for approval by Parliament on the economic partnership agreement between the Southern African Customs Union member states and Mozambique on the one part and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland of the other part recommends that the House:
In terms of Section 231(2) of the Constitution approve this said agreement.
The purpose of this agreement is to provide stability for the trading relationship between the Sacum countries and the UK once it formally exit the European Union, EU, and may no longer utilise the existing trading agreement between the UK, EU and Sacum countries.
The Sacum countries are: Botswana, eSwatini, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia and South Africa. In this regard, the UK, EPA provides transitional arrangement to enable South African traders to continue their existing trading relationship with the UK.
It will maintain duty free and quota free access for exports form Botswana, eSwatini, Lesotho, Mozambique and Namibia into the UK. For South Africa tariff rates quota for 13 agricultural products as currently provided under the Southern African Development Community, EU, EPA will be maintained.
In addition, South Africa has secured favourable tariff rates quota for market access for these agricultural products into the UK, particularly for sugar and wine volumes. As the UK is not in a position to negotiate on the new issue, a built-in agenda has been agreed to and will be addressed during the future negotiations with the UK after it officially exits EU. These include duty free, quota free market access for South Africa or an increase of tariffs from quota volumes, regional accumulation to allow Botswana, eSwatini, Lesotho, Mozambique and Namibia to integrate their products, especially basic agricultural products inputs into the South African manufacturing process.
The other is the inclusion of certain types of vehicles. The utilisation of the export taxes enhance cooperation of technical barriers to trade, such as standard and conformity assessment procedures as well as the utilisation of the agricultural indicators and the introduction of the electronic certification system.
South Africa has a positive trade balance with the UK. The UK continues to be one of South Africa’s traditional
trading partners. Therefore, the committee unanimously supports the approval of the agreement for ratification as it important for South Africa to maintain and grow this relationship with the UK. I submit this report for consideration. Thank you.
Declarations of Vote:
Mr A G WHITFIELD: Hon House Chairperson, the DA welcomes the Economic Partnership Agreement between the Southern African Customs Union and Mozambique, Sacum, with United Kingdom, UK. It is incumbent upon the South African government to ensure that where such opportunities arise, we make full use of them. The Sacum, Economic Partnership Agreement, EPA, is largely a continuation of the SADC, EU, EPA that allows for normalised trade relations and a replacement legal framework as the UK seeks to exit the EU.
Moreover, our total trade with the UK amounts to R101,02 billion and this is crucial considering the fact that the UK is our fourth largest trade destination and accounts for R57,07 billion in exports. In terms of our trade basket, platinum, fresh fruit and motor cars
account for our largest exports. However, our trade in fresh fruit in particular citrus fruit has come under increasing strain due to phytosanitary standards put in place under the SADC, EU, EPA.
It is worth mentioning that this impact around citrus fruit stems from the fungal disease called Citrus Black Spot, CBS, and has been around since 1992. The EU is of the belief that the South African citrus fruit is the carrier of CBS despite scientific studies having disproven this. Furthermore, it is well documented that the EU climate is unsuitable for the reproduction of CBS. Therefore, it can only be reasonably assumed that the CBS argument has been used as a nontariff barrier alongside agricultural subsidies provided to farmers in the EU.
According to the Bureau for Food and Agricultural Policy Institute, the citrus industry saddled with the cost of R1,86 billion in additional inputs in order to comply with CBS protocols. Surely, this cost is unsustainable and this money could be put to better by expanding citrus production in South Africa, thus creating more jobs and contributing towards the expansion of our country’s
agricultural sector. The opportunity to negotiate new terms and regulations lies with respect to citrus exports.
Additional opportunities exist within the beef and poultry industries and the Sacum, EPA should be used a means to unlock these opportunities in order to expand our export basket. Trade is a two way street and it is important that the Department of Trade and Industry and government at large gets its house in order. This requires a commitment by government, to ensure that property rights are protected, interdepartmental cooperation with the phytosanitary standards are maintained and the terms of existing trade agreements are not contravened. For example, the Copyrights Amendment Bill which speaks to a fair use principle has put up participation in the generalised system of preferences and severe risks by virtue of the fact that it allows for free use of copyrighted content.
The United States of America has now begun a full blown review of our participation which could wipe out
R12 billion in trade and cost thousands of jobs. In
addition, private property rights as enshrined in Section
25 of the Constitution need to be protected. We cannot allow for government’s failure to deliver on land reformation to be used as an excuse to undermine a fundamental element of the market based economic system. As long as these conditions are met, Minister Patel will enjoy the support of the DA in his efforts to boost trade and grow the economy.
The Springboks now have affected their own version of Brexit on Saturday at the Rugby World Cup Final. This is not indicative of our long standing political and trading relationship. The DA looks forward to deepening and strengthening our trade relationship with the UK and will continue to support measures taken to achieve this. I thank you.
Ms Y N YAKO: Hon Chairperson, in September the Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Patel paraded a so-called Sacum, UK economic partnership deal. We said it then and we will say it again, there is no fundamental shift that is going to happen in the trade relations between Southern Africa and the colonial racist Britain and the
UK in general. This is nothing but a new colonial status which will continue to benefit the minority white agricultural practitioners, European manufacturers and allow mining companies some of who are criminal syndicates like Genkor to continue to enjoy unfettered access to our mineral resources whilst our people do not benefit.
What we are dealing with here is a problem, the protection of white monopoly control of the economy in South Africa. Here is what we should be doing as Southern Africa and the continent. Firstly, we should realise and appreciate that our development as the region and African Continent is linked and should happen as one thing.
Secondly, we must begin to talk about African economy and trade more.
Thirdly, we must follow African Tree Trade Agreement which must fast track the process to establish one currency, an African currency. Lastly, we must begin to regulate as a continent goods that come to Africa and mineral resources that leave the continent and agree that
more than 70% of all minerals must be beneficiated in the continent.
If we continue to trade as the individual countries within the world, even agreements such as Sacum are rendered useless. In South Africa, we must repurpose state owned entities such as Eskom, Transnet, SAA and Denel to play a much broader and practical role in the development of Africa and building of infrastructure, instead of celebrating and agreeing to some colonial arrangement that should have died in 1994. I thank you hon Chair.
Inkosi R N CEBEKHULU: House Chair, the IFP welcomes this signature by the Southern African Customs Union Member States and Mozambique which was signed on 10 October 2019 in respect of a new Economic Partnership Agreement with the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Island. This agreement will most certainly provide a great deal of certainty and comfort as regards the continuation of trade between all parties once the UK is no longer a member of the European Union. The implementation of the agreement must be prioritised in order to ensure that its
objectives are met and have the full support of the IFP for the approval of the House in terms of section 231(2) of the Constitution of the Republic of SA. I thank you.
Mnr F J MULDER: Agb Huisvoorsitter, die VF Plus verwelkom die ooreenkoms wat bereik is tussen die Suider-Afrikaanse Doane Unie en Mosambiek aan die een kant, met die Vereenigde Koninkryk – wat tans nie so vereenigd is nie!
Wanneer Brittanje dus die Europese Unie sou verlaat, sal die ekonomiese vernootskapsooreenkoms van 2016 tussen die suider-Afrikaanse blok en Brittanje verleng word. Handel tussen Suid-Afrika en Brittanje het in 2018 tot meer as R100 miljard gestyg en moet beskerm word. Dankie.
Mr W M THRING: Hon House Chair, the ACDP appreciates the proactive stance that the Department of Trade and Industry took when it became evident that Brexit was to take place. The Southern African Customs Union Member States and Mozambique, and the UK of Britain and Northern Island Economic Partnership Agreement once ratified, will avoid a trade disruption by rolling over the SADC and EU
Economic Partnership Agreement, EPA to a stand-alone agreement. If and when the UK leaves the EU, the UK will obviously no longer be a part of the 28 EU Member States.
This EPA is a no-brainer as it presents a win-win scenario for the South African trade in a sense that, should Brexit take place, we retain our EPA with the EU and simultaneously enter into this EPA with the UK. This will result in an overall increase in our exports to European countries. With respect to our UK EPA additional market access for 13 agricultural products including wine and sugar will be secured. The ACDP is aware that the UK is our fourth largest trading partner behind China, Germany and the United States.
And as stated by Minister Patel a total trade which excludes some of our gold exports from SA between South Africa and the UK increased from 56,3 billion in 2012 to 101,2 billion in 2018, an increase of 79,8%. Exports from South Africa to the UK increased from 27,4 billion in 2012 to 57,7 billion in 2018. In terms of employment created from exports to the UK, it is estimated that there are some 56 000 direct jobs and 117 000 indirect
jobs that will be created. In essence the effects of the agreement enable South African businesses to continue to export their products to the UK and ensure that there is continuity within this market.
Finally, it is the view of the ACDP that those who call for boycotts and the cancellation of trade agreements between the United States of America and Israel are enemies of the poor and the unemployed in South Africa. These voices are strangely silent when our African brothers are massacred in Nigeria and Somalia by terrorist organisations and other brothers and sisters in Africa sold into slavery in Libya. The ACDP supports this EPA. I thank you.
Ms J HERMANS: House Chair, on behalf of the ANC I stand before you in support of the Portfolio Committee on Trade and Industry that this House, in terms of section 231(2) of the Constitution approves the Economic Partnership Agreement between the Southern African Customs Union and Mozambique, Sacum and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Island.
We are part of an international trade system in which we have entered into bilaterals and multilateral trade agreements with countries of the world to ensure that our country, like all other countries in the world, has access to international markets. We stand for rule-based international system in which mechanisms and instruments have been developed and agreed to on how to conduct trade at an international level.
As alluded to by the chair of the portfolio committee, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and South Africa have extensive trade and economic relations which continue to grow. The total trade excluding gold, as has been mentioned before, between South Africa and the UK increased from 56,3 billion in 2012 to 101,2 billion in 2018, an increase of 79,8%. Wow! [Interjections.]
South Africa has a positive trade balance with the UK. The top UK imports from South Africa are gold including grated platinum, palladium, motor cars and other vehicles; fresh fruits including citrus, grapes, apples, pears, berries, peaches, avocado pears and wine - makes
you hungry. The purpose of the agreement is to provide stability EFF – stability to protect jobs.
The trading relationship between Southern Customs Union Member countries and the UK, once it formally exits the European Union, may no longer utilise existing trade agreements between the EU and Southern Customs Union Member countries. In this regard the UK Economic Partnership Agreement provides transitional arrangements to enable South African traders to continue the existing trading relationship with the UK. It is not a new trading agreement. It will maintain duty-free and quota-free access for exports from Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mozambique and Namibia into the UK. Thank you. Wow! [Time expired.]
Question put: That the Economic Partnership Agreement, EPA between the Southern African Customs Union and Mozambique, Sacum and the United Kingdom, UK be approved.
Economic Partnership Agreement, EPA between the Southern African Customs Union and Mozambique, Sacum and the United Kingdom, UK accordingly approved.
The House adjourned at 17:54